Man to appear in court charged with murder of schoolgirl Olivia Pratt-Korbel
Thomas Cashman, 34, has appeared at Liverpool Magistrates’ Court charged with the murder of nine-year-old Olivia Pratt-Korbel and the case has been sent to Liverpool Crown Court where it will be heard at 2pm today.
Thomas Cashman had been due to attend Liverpool Magistrates’ Court alongside a second defendant, Paul Russell, 40, who is accused of assisting an offender.
Cashman is alleged to have killed the nine-year-old, who was shot dead after convicted burglar Joseph Nee was chased by a gunman into her home in Didcot, Liverpool, on August 22.
He is also charged with the attempted murder of Olivia’s mother, 46-year-old Cheryl Korbel, who was injured during the incident, and Nee.
Russell, of Snowberry Road, West Derby, faces a single count of assisting an offender.
Cashman, of Grenadier Drive, also in the West Derby area, is further charged with two counts of possessing a firearm to endanger life.
There have been 11 arrests over Olivia’s death so far, with nine men previously detained as part of the wide-scale investigation, all of whom were later bailed.
Classmates of Olivia have been sharing their memories of her and receiving counselling since returning to school after her death, her headteacher said.
Rebecca Wilkinson, headteacher of St Margaret Mary’s Catholic Junior School in Huyton, said the nine-year-old “oozed kindness” and would be remembered for her smile.
“We have had counsellors in every class,” she said.
“(The children) are devastated at the loss of their friend, they truly are, but the counselling has definitely helped and we have been so proud of the resilience the children have shown since they’ve been back.”
Olivia’s funeral was held at St Margaret Mary’s Church in Knotty Ash last month.
Pink ties, jackets, scarves and bows were worn by those attending the service after her family asked people to wear a “splash of pink”.
Ms Korbel carried a pink teddy bear into the service, during which she said: “Liv touched so many people’s hearts and was loved and adored by everyone. She will never be forgotten.
“I will never say goodbye but what I will say is goodnight, love you, see you in the morning.”