The jury in the trial of a 16-year-old Suffolk schoolboy accused of murdering his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend has been sent home for the fourth day without reaching a verdict. 

The defendant, who cannot be named because of his age, has denied murdering 16-year-old Harley Barfield in Haverhill earlier this year but has admitted manslaughter and possessing the knife that was used to kill him.

Mr Justice Thomas Linden has now said he will accept a majority decision from the jury but thought it was “wise” the jury decided to adjourn again and come back the following day.

During the month-long trial, the boy’s defence team said he had an autism spectrum disorder, which reduced his responsibility for the killing.

It has been alleged the boy armed himself with a kitchen knife and lay in wait for Harley, who was going out with his former girlfriend, before confronting him in a “jealous rage” and trying to goad him into a fight near Strasbourg Square in Haverhill in January this year.

Harley was airlifted to the hospital, where, despite the efforts of doctors, he died two days after the stabbing on January 11 as a result of a fatal wound to his heart.