We have increased patrols in Kirkby after two shootings last night (Monday, 25 November), and are continuing to appeal for information from the public.
As an immediate and direct response to the incidents, officers authorised a Section 60 stop search order in Kirkby. The order, under Section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994, was put in place to last until 4am (Tuesday 26 November 2019) and allowed officers to stop and search people without suspicion.
Officers were contacted just before 6.45pm to reports two men had received gunshot wounds in the Market Tavern, Newtown Gardens.
The men were treated at the scene and taken to hospital for further treatment. A 34-year-old man is being treated for an injury to his arm, and the second, aged 31, sustained an injury to his chest. Their conditions are described as serious but stable.
Around 10 minutes later, shortly before 7pm, officers were called to Delfby Crescent to reports shots had been fired at a property, causing damage to a wall but no injuries. Following enquiries, it is now believed that discharge happened at around 6pm, prior to the incident at Market Tavern.
Investigations are underway to establish the exact circumstances of both incidents, with house-to-house and forensic enquiries being carried out in the local area. CCTV footage will be examined in a bid to identify any offenders and establish exactly what happened.
Detectives are keeping an open mind about whether they are linked in any way to the incident in Dovecot on Sunday night.
Detective Superintendent Richie Salter said: “This is the third shooting this week and officers are continuing to work extended hours in the fight against gun crime.
“We are not prepared to let people bring fear and intimidation to our streets through the use of firearms, and we need communities to stand shoulder to shoulder with us and give us the information to help put these people behind bars.
"Criminals have chosen to use firearms at the heart of our communities in Merseyside, and in a busy pub, recklessly putting innocent members of the public at risk in the process.
“We share the disgust and revulsion the community will feel at hearing this news, and we will not stand by and allow those intent on carrying weapons to bring violence to Kirkby, or anywhere in Merseyside.
“The investigations into both incidents are currently in their early stages and we are working to establish what has happened, but early enquiries suggest the incident in the pub was targeted.
“The community will have seen extra patrols responding to the incidents in the area last night, and can expect to see more again in the coming days and nights with officers out speaking to the community and providing a highly visible presence.
“Our presence in and around Kirkby is not at the expense of other areas, and we will continue to patrol and be visible in all areas of Merseyside we believe require our attention and action.”
Det Supt Salter added: “Just yesterday officers arrested a man on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of cannabis, possession of a controlled drug and money laundering, and stop checked a number of people and vehicles in the area.
“And on Saturday night, five men were arrested on suspicion of theft of a motor vehicle after numerous vehicles, some of which are believed to have been stolen, were found at a premises on Kirkby industrial Estate. They have been release under investigation pending further enquiries.
“In recent weeks and months, we have invested significant resources in disrupting offenders who engage in serious violence as part of Operation Target, conducting more than 100 stop checks, arresting suspects and seizing weapons.
“In October, 15 members of a crime gang who were involved in a conspiracy to possess firearms were sent to prison for 119 years, and later that month 22 people were jailed for 309 years after being convicted of gun and drug offences. In the course of that investigation 10 firearms were seized, along with thousands of rounds of ammunition.
“During a firearms surrender in August, 131 weapons and ammunition were handed in, including 22 viable firearms and more than 2,000 rounds of live ammunition.
“This activity to make life as difficult as possible for anyone intent on storing, carrying or using firearms will continue.”
Det Supt Salter continued: "I appeal for anyone who was in the area around Newtown Gardens in Kirkby Town Centre, or Delfby Crescent, on Monday evening who saw anything to contact us a matter of urgency. Anything they saw, however small it may seem, could prove vital in our efforts to bring these people took justice and make our streets safer.
“If you were driving in the area and may have dashcam footage, or have home CCTV, we would be very keen to hear from you. We will act on all information to arrest those who cause harm and put them before the courts.
“There is no place for firearms, or those who use them and bring fear to our communities, on our streets. We need members of the public to stand with us, and come forward with information.”
Information from the public is vital, anyone with information is asked to contact us by calling 101 or DM us @MerPolCC quoting ref 19100690924 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.