Two arrests made over Croxteth shooting

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Thursday, August 23, 2007

Two teenagers, aged 14 and 18, have been arrested on suspicion of the murder of an 11-year-old boy. The boy, identified by detectives as Rhys Jones, was shot last night in the Croxteth area of Liverpool, on his way home from playing football, by a hooded youth. The police are expecting to make further arrests during the week.

Merseyside Police have said the youths, both males, are also from the Croxteth area. They have since been bailed, and the police are now looking for a person aged 13 to 15-years-old. There is some speculation that a gang known as the "Croxteth Crew" may have been involved.

Bernard Hogan-Howe, Merseyside Police Chief Constable, has made it clear that the police are still considering other leads, saying: "There have been two arrests in this case, but that doesn't prove anything. The principal thing I need to get over to the public is we need your help, and we are not yet at all certain as to who committed this crime." He went on to state the police are looking for both the killer and the person who provided the weapon.

PM Gordon Brown has described the incident as a "heinous crime that shocked the whole of the country", while Home Secretary Jacqui Smith said she is "shocked and saddened to hear about this tragic shooting". They both joined calls for the local community to cooperate fully with the police.

The leader of Liverpool City Council, Warren Bradley, has called for "a summit consisting of community leaders, police, emergency services and reformed criminals of all major cities to be held with the home secretary to find solutions to the issues we all face". He says gun crime "is an issue that all major cities face".