Reward of £50,000 offered in hunt for killer of murdered schoolgirl Olivia Pratt-Korbel

Crimestoppers Founder and Chair Lord Ashcroft has personally offered the £50,000 reward in a bid for justice.

The founder of the charity Crimestoppers has offered a reward of up to £50,000 for information leading to the convicition of the person responsible for the murder of Olivia Pratt-Korbel at her Dovecot home.

Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft said in a statement that anyone who came forward would be doing ‘the right thing for Olivia, her family, friends and the wider community across Liverpool who are still trying to come to terms with this tragedy.’

Olivia was fatally shot in the chest when a gunman chased another man into her house on Kingsheath Avenue, on August 22, and opened fire.

Her mother Cheryl, 46, was shot in the wrist as she tried to shield the nine-year-old.

Intended target Joseph Nee had burst into the house through the front door to escape the shooter.

Olivia Pratt-Korbel

Lord Ashcroft said: “Olivia’s murder had shocked us all, which is why I have made this personal offer of up to £50,000 available via Crimestoppers to help get justice for Olivia’s family and friends.

“What happened is truly unacceptable and I say to anyone who has information that can help catch the killer to come forward completely anonymously.”

He said that the charity’s UK contact centre takes calls and receives information online every day from people who live in close-knit communities who are ‘genuinely fearful about speaking directly to the police’.

“That’s why we’re here to help them do the right thing and say what they know, safe in the knowledge that with Crimestoppers, once you’ve said your piece, there will be no consequences,” Lord Ashcroft said.

Murder investigation search for weapons

Merseyside Police conducted an extensive search at West Derby Golf Club on Monday as they hunted for the guns used in the murder of Olivia.

Specially trained search officers from the Matrix disruption team have been carrying out an extensive search in around the golf course, with the assistance of an underwater search team and a specialist drone unit.

West Derby Golf Club on Yew Tree Road, Aspes Road runs up the right-hand side of the image. Image: Google Earth

Three men from the West Derby area were arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender on Thursday and Friday last week in connection with Olivia’s murder.

Nine people have now been arrested during the course of the murder investigation.

What’s been said

Detective Chief Superintendent Mark Kameen, said: “Three weeks on and our investigation continues in our relentless pursuit of the man responsible for Olivia’s murder and those who are shielding him.

“I promised that we would leave no stone unturned in our hunt for the offender and the guns used on that night, and today following information we are carrying out an extensive land search at West Derby Golf Club in our hunt for those weapons.

“My message to the offender is clear – we will not stop until we have the evidence to put you before the courts and behind bars.

DCS Mark Kameen and Chief Constable Serena Kennedy from Merseyside Police speak to the media at force headquarters in Rose Hill

“Olivia’s family are absolutely broken by her tragic loss, which has robbed a beautiful young child of the life and future she should have been looking forward to. Olivia wanted to be a teacher, or a vet and her family have described her as someone who liked to laugh and make others laugh. She was an innocent young child in her own home, who should have been safe.

“Since Olivia’s murder the investigation team has been working around the clock. We have made nine arrests and we are building up an evidential picture, but we still need more information and we need to find the guns.”

Mother of Olivia makes emotional appeal

Cheryl Korbel, the mother of Olivia Pratt-Korbel, has made an emotional video appeal urging whoever was responsible for her daughter’s death to ‘own up’.

On Tuesday, the mother of Olivia called on those responsible for her daughter’s murder to ‘own up’ in an emotional video appeal.

Ms Korbel also paid tribute to her “little shadow”.

She appeared in the video appeal wearing a cast on her wrist where she had been shot and said she hoped whoever was responsible for the killing would come forward.

Ms Korbel said: “You know you’ve done wrong, so you need to own up. Like I taught my kids, you do something wrong, you own up to it.

“If anyone is hiding these guns they need to speak up because they need to be off the streets. No one, no one at all should have to go through this.”

Ms Korbel broke down in tears as she described how her daughter would never stop talking and said: “That’s what I miss the most, because I can’t hear her talk.”

Olivia’s father, John Francis Pratt, also paid tribute to his daughter and called for anyone with information on her death to come forward.

How to contact Crimestoppers

The Crimestoppers UK contact centre is open 24/7 on freephone 0800 555 111.

They can also be contacted via a secure anonymous online form.

Read more information about claiming a reward here.