Man to be sentenced for murder of nine-year-old Olivia Pratt-Korbel

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A man is due to be sentenced for the murder of Liverpool schoolgirl Olivia Pratt-Korbel.

Thomas Cashman, 34, was found guilty last week of murdering the nine-year-old and the wounding with intent of her mother Cheryl Korbel, 46, as he chased convicted drug dealer Joseph Nee into their home in the Dovecot area of the city on August 22 last year.

The jury also found him guilty of the attempted murder of Nee and two counts of possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life.

Olivia Pratt-Korbel death
Nine-year-old Olivia Pratt-Korbel (Family handout)

The court heard he had been “scoping out” Nee, the intended target, on the day of the shooting and lay in wait for him, armed with two guns, as he watched a football match at the house of a friend.

Footage played to the jury showed the gunman, wearing tracksuit bottoms which matched a pair worn by Cashman, chasing Nee up Kingsheath Avenue and firing three shots.

The jury was told Nee ran towards the open door of Olivia’s family home, after Ms Korbel came out to see what the noise was, and the fatal shot was fired through the front door.

It hit Ms Korbel in the wrist as she tried to shut the door and struck Olivia in the chest.

Cashman, a father-of-two, said around the time of the shooting he had been at a friend’s house where he counted £10,000 in cash and smoked a spliff.

During his evidence, he told the court: “I’m not a killer, I’m a dad.”

But a woman who had a fling with Cashman told the jury he came to her house after the shooting, where he changed his clothes and she heard him say he had “done Joey”.

He will be sentenced by Mrs Justice Yip at Manchester Crown Court on Monday.

Paul Russell, 41, who admitted assisting an offender by driving Cashman away from an address after the shooting and passing his clothes to another person, is expected to be sentenced separately at a later date.

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