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Police said that it was "a sustained attack during the course of which the pair received serious head injuries and their faces were so swollen we could not ascertain which one was female and which one was male".
Both were hospitalised as a result of the attack, initially at Rochdale Infirmary.
She had been dating Robert Maltby, a 21-year-old art student from Manchester, for three years, and they both had a long-standing attachment to the goth subculture.
Two of them were convicted of murder and sentenced to life imprisonment.Plays, films, art and books have covered the issues surrounding the murder.Sophie Lancaster (born 26 November 1986) was a former pupil at Bacup and Rawtenstall Grammar School and Haslingden High School, and a gap year student planning to attend Accrington and Rossendale College to do an English degree.They had asked for measures to be taken about the area before the tragedy occurred.Following the murder, residents called for improved security in the area, but Rossendale Borough Council said park rangers would be too expensive.
Maltby's injuries left him in a coma and with internal bleeding.