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A young girl who was tragically shot dead in her home in Liverpool has been named, as the unknown gunman remains at large.
Police were called to reports of a shooting on Kingsheath Avenue, Dovecot at around 10 pm on Monday (August 22).
The victim has now been named by police as Olivia Pratt-Korbel.
READ MORE Girl, 9, shot dead in her home with gunman still on run
The name was given during a press conference today (August 23), lead by Chief Constable Serena Kennedy and Detective Chief Superintendent Mark Kameen, Head of Investigations.
Chief Constable Serena Kennedy said that the young girl's family are "absolutely devastated, inconsolable, and heartbroken", and that the murder has "rocked our communities".
She added that the gunman had "no connection" to the family, and went on to make an unprecedented appeal to criminals across Liverpool to help catch those responsible.
The senior police officer went on: "I want to take the opportunity to appeal to members of the criminal fraternity, and ask them to examine their consciences as they will have vital information that can help us.
"The killing of a nine-year-old child is an absolute tragedy, and crosses every single boundary, and I would urge them to do the right thing so we can put this person behind bars."
DCC Kameen detailed the incident during the press conference.
He described the shooter as wearing a black jacket, black pants, a black balaclava and cap, and was carrying a handgun.
He shot two men walking down the road, and they ran away.
He explained: "Olivia's mum Cheryl opened the door to her home at this point to see what had gone on – this prompted one of the runners to force his way into the home.
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The gunman followed him in and fired a shot – which injured the mum and killed the girl who was standing directly behind her mum."
The girl was rushed to Alder Hey Children's Hospital and was later pronounced dead.
The mum was taken to a different hospital.
Harry Doyle, assistant mayor and councillor for Knotty Ash, described the incident as "absolutely devastating" and said the "community is shook."
“People are devastated about the fact that a nine-year-old girl has lost her life and obviously really concerned," he said.
“The community is shook. You look around and people are on their doorsteps and they don’t know quite what to think or say, you’ve got mums hugging their kids. It’s very real, these kids will be playing out on the streets together and it’s just awful.”
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A spokesperson for Merseyside Police said earlier today: "We have launched an investigation following the tragic fatal shooting of a child in Huyton last night, Monday, August 22.
"Officers attended at a house on Kingsheath Avenue at 10pm after reports that an unknown male had fired a gun inside the property.
"A nine-year-old girl suffered a gunshot injury to the chest and was taken to hospital in a critical condition. She has since sadly died.
"Next of kin have been informed and are being supported by specially trained family liaison officers. A man also suffered gunshot wounds to his body and a woman suffered a gunshot injury to her hand during the incident inside the house.
"They have both been taken to hospital for treatment for their injuries. An investigation is underway and house-to-house, CCTV and forensic enquiries are in the process of being carried out. A cordon is also in place."
Assistant Chief Constable Jenny Sims has described the tragedy as "truly shocking.
She said: "This is a truly shocking incident in which tragically a young and innocent girl has been shot and sadly died.
"Our thoughts and condolences go to her family and friends at this very difficult time. No parent should ever have to suffer the loss of a child in these dreadful circumstances."
It comes 15-years to the day that schoolboy Rhys Jones, 11, was killed by a stray bullet in Liverpool.
MP Joanne Anderson commented: "15 years to the day that Rhys Jones was murdered, another innocent child of our city becomes a victim to gun crime.
"Has nothing been learned? Enough is enough. This is an appalling act of evil. If you know something, you must come forward. Guns have no place in our communities."
Assistant mayor Doyle also spoke about Rhys today, stating he was the same age as the youngster when he was killed.
He said: “I remember the atmosphere in the city, and not just the city actually, nationwide, around the shooting of Rhys Jones was just absolutely awful. I remember my family being equally – I look at families this morning on the doorsteps – as worried and concerned and devastated.
“My mum wouldn’t let me walk to school around that time. It is unthinkable and it’s unbelievable that this has happened again 15 years on. We thought we’d rid ourselves of this violence and this week we’ve seen it return.”
The incident follows on from a young woman who died after gunmen burst into her home.
Ashley Dale, 28, was not the “intended target” when armed men attacked her in a Liverpool garden, shortly after midnight on Sunday, August 21, police say.
So far, no arrests have been made following the fatal shooting.
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