For information that results in the arrest of those guilty for the murder of nine-year-old Olivia Pratt-Korbel in Liverpool, Crimestoppers is paying £200,000.
The sum of money is the largest single prize in the charity’s history as authorities work to find the shooter who murdered the little child and wounded her mother.
When a shooter pursued convicted burglar Joseph Nee inside the residence at about 10 p.m., Olivia was shot and murdered.
Her medical cause of death was determined by a post-mortem study to be a gunshot wound to the chest.
Nine people have been detained by the police in connection with the assault, but no one has been charged with Olivia’s murder as of yet because of a code of silence among Liverpool’s gangs, according to detectives, who claim that anyone withholding information for fear of being implicated is “protecting the killers.”
Lord Ashcroft, the organization’s founder, first gave £50,000 last week. He has now increased that amount to match £100,000 from a fresh, civic-minded private contributor, bringing the total to £200,000.
According to Lord Ashcroft, this case has shocked the country and Liverpool in particular in addition to those who are immediately touched.
“I am thrilled that Crimestoppers can now offer a record £200,000 for information to find Olivia’s murderer thanks to the help of a private donor,” said the donor.
Crimestoppers accepts anonymous calls and online submissions at 0800 555 111.
The 46-year-old mother of Olivia, Cheryl Korbel, delivered a moving homily to a crowded church audience last week in Knotty Ash, Liverpool. Olivia was nine years old when she was fatally murdered in her own home little over three weeks before.
At the family’s request, hundreds of people wore a “splash of pink” and lined the streets as a white horse-drawn carriage carried Olivia’s casket to the church.
A shooter who was pursuing a convicted burglar and drug dealer broke into Olivia’s house and started shooting randomly, striking her in the chest.
While frantically attempting to close the front door, Mrs. Korbel was shot in the wrist. Her daughter, who was standing behind her, was also damaged by the bullet. Despite being transported to the hospital, the child was not able to be rescued. Both the shooter and the victim were unrelated to Olivia’s family.
Mrs. Korbel addressed the crowd while wearing a black jacket with a pink ribbon and explaining that Olivia, also known as Liv to family and friends, was born six weeks early and spent nine days in a special infant unit.
She was so little, yet even as a baby, Mrs. Korbel noted, “she had her own ideas.”
She spoke of Olivia’s “cheeky grin,” her love of animals, and her ability to sing and dance.
‘Olivia was extremely cheerful and effervescent and would speak for England, to the point we believed she had Duracell batteries someplace,’ the mother-of-three said.
She had a solution for everything, therefore she would have been a fantastic attorney. Mrs. Korbel concluded the eulogy by saying, “Liv touched the hearts of so many people and was cherished by everyone”.
She will always be remembered.
I’ll never say good-bye; instead, I’ll just say goodnight, love you, and see you in the morning.
Father Roy Cooper, the parish priest, presented a eulogy from Olivia Pratt’s father, John Francis Pratt.
He called Olivia “our very own little diva” and praised her as helpful, gentle, and kind.
Chloe, Olivia’s sister, also performed a reading during the one-hour event.
Lilies were placed on top of Olivia’s white coffin, which had butterflies painted on the side. Floral tributes in the form of unicorns and teddy bears were put next to it in the carriage.
The funeral was attended by Rebecca Wilkinson, Olivia’s headteacher at St. Margaret Mary’s Catholic Junior School, which is located just next to the church.
Pink ribbons and pink hearts spelling out Olivia’s name have been used by students to adorn the school railings and windows.
In her honour, her classmates likewise painted their nails pink and chose to watch Matilda instead of class.
Archbishop Malcolm McMahon said in his sermon that Olivia was a “gift to her family and everyone who knew her.”
According to him, Olivia’s untimely death would result in a community in Liverpool devoid of violence and a haven for peace and justice. Olivia’s casket was brought out of the church while Amazing Grace was sung.
While mourners cheered, her relatives embraced and wiped away tears as the cortege departed for a private family burial.