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A 15-year-old girl will spend up to nine years in jail after fatally stabbing a rival cheerleader. The girl, who has not been identified due to her age, attacked Kayla Green, 16, during a brawl at a celebration for a school basketball team, who had just won a tournament.

Green, pronounced dead after being taken to hospital, was the captain of the school’s junior varsity cheerleaders.

The defendant was part of an independent cheer squad which Green had been a member of previously.

Sophomore student Green suffered a fatal abdomen wound during violent scenes last April in Mount Vernon, a small city in upstate New York, US.

Sentencing her killer on Tuesday, Judge Susan Cacace said the motive is “a long-standing rivalry between two cheerleading squads in the city of Mount Vernon”.

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The offence carries a maximum sentence of 3 1/3 to 10 years for a juvenile offender in the State of New York.

The teen killer, who will serve her term in a juvenile detention centre, expressed remorse for her actions, according to local media outlet Lohud.com.

She said: “I am sorry my actions took away a big sister. I am sorry my actions took away a daughter.”

District Attorney Miriam Roach said in a statement after the sentencing: “A teenage defendant senselessly took the life of Kayla Green, and in doing so, left a community devastated.

“As a family and the Mount Vernon community remain in mourning, I want to reiterate my commitment to working with our vital community partners for meaningful violence prevention and intervention, especially for our youth.

“I know that nothing can cure the pain of losing a child.

“My Office will do what it can within the bounds of New York’s laws to seek accountability in these cases.”