Dozens of killers currently remain free as multiple Merseyside murders continue to go unsolved.
Brutal attacks going back years remain a mystery to detectives – and the people behind them are still at large and roaming the streets.
Despite hundreds of appeals and countless arrests, Merseyside Police have been unable to close the book on these cases and give the victims’ families the justice they deserve.
Here the ECHO takes a look at some of Merseyside’s unsolved murders and urges anyone with information to get in touch with police on 101 or crime stoppers anonymously on 0800555111.
Doting father James Taylor was gunned down as he waited to pick up one of his daughters from her dance class.
The 34-year-old Liverpool fan, from West Derby, was sitting in his car at the time of the brazen attack in Addison Street, Liverpool city centre on Thursday, February 7, 2019.
Dad-of-six James, known as Jay, was described as “doing what he loved” when he died – being a devoted father.
His heartbroken wife told the ECHO: “He was a Red through and through. I used to say to him ‘who do you love more – me or Liverpool?’ He was crazy for them.
“We would go to Wales for the caravan and he would go home for the match – I used to go mad at him for it.”
His family released a statement shortly after his death, saying: “James, also known as Jay, was a doting father to six children, loving husband, son and brother.
“He was a kind, selfless and caring family man who had time for everyone.
“Although he was a proud supporter of Liverpool Football Club, his life really did revolve around his children (four girls and two boys), his wife and wider family.
“Jay died doing what he did best, being a devoted father, and sadly they will now have to grow up without him in their lives.”
In the weeks after Mr Taylor’s murder, a 50-year-old man from Everton, a 29-year-old man from Liverpool, a 38-year-old man from Walton, a 34-year-old man from Liverpool, a 24-year-old man from Everton, a 35-year-old man from Liverpool and a 31-year-old man from the Liverpool were all arrested in connection with the killing.
All seven were released under investigation.
Fatah Warsame was stabbed to death in Liverpool city centre after a night out with friends.
The 20-year-old, from Cardiff, was attacked on Hanover Street on Sunday, May 6, 2018 but no one has ever been charged over his murder.
It is believed that an argument outside a nearby bar on Slater Street may have led to the death of Mr Warsame who died from a single stab wound to the chest.
During the attack, Fatah was punched multiple times before being stabbed – the knife was found nearby.
An off-duty nurse saw the 20-year-old lying bleeding in the street and gave him emergency first aid until an ambulance arrived on the scene, but Mr Warsame later died from his wounds.
Detectives said that Mr Warsame had known friends and connections in Liverpool and this was not his first trip to the city.
Three people were arrested in connection with the killing but were released under investigation a few days later.
Friends and representatives of Fatah’s former school described him as “good-hearted”.
In a statement shared with the ECHO, a spokesperson for Fitzalan High School: “Fatah will be fondly remembered and our thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time.”
Mudassar Khan, a friend from Mr Warsame’s time at Cathays High, said: “He was a very lively and good hearted individual, always full of energy and making people laugh.
“If for some reason I would arrive late to tutorial lessons, he would say to me, ‘I imitated your voice and the teacher marked you in because of it’.
“The last conversation I had with him was always about the tutorial lessons and we would both laugh at the fun times we had in them.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact Merseyside Police detectives on 0151 777 8618. You can also contact our social media desk via twitter @MerPolCC or Facebook Merseyside Police CC.
You can also call 101 quoting incident reference 18200093395 or contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously, on 0800 555 111 or via their online form .
Leroy Ottey died after a targeted shooting on Alderson Road in Wavertree.
The 25-year-old, known locally as Mari, had just got out of a taxi when he was shot several times, on October 17, 2018.
A Home Office post-mortem examination revealed that the Liverpool man died from multiple gunshot wounds.
Police told the ECHO that a handgun was thought to have been used in the fatal attack outside, Mr Ottey’s home.
A passer-by who came to Mr Ottey’s aid, said he saw a dark-coloured Audi car moving away from the scene seconds after the shooting.
A black Audi was discovered burnt out in Abbeystead Road at 6.30am on Thursday morning, less than two miles from the shooting.
The stolen Audi S3 Quattro had been deliberately set on fire and officers have since put out appeals for anyone who saw the car to come forward.
Both men were released pending further enquiries.
Carl Russell was shot dead on a Belle Vale street by an assassin on a push bike, on October 7, 2018.
The 27-year-old was sat with his girlfriend in her car, outside his home on Cornwood Close, when the gunman struck.
The assassin is believed to have cycled towards the car, shot four bullets from a handgun and then rode off on a muddy track which runs along Cornwood Close and into some neighbouring fields.
Carl was shot in the head and chest in the attack and staggered out of the vehicle and into the street.
But despite the best efforts by neighbours who performed CPR before paramedics arrived, he died from multiple gunshot wounds.
After his death it emerged he was on day release from prison to prepare for his integration back into society.
At the time of the murder local policing superintendent Mark Wiggins appealed for any information on sightings of a man in a “very distinctive high-vis orange jacket” to come forward.
The jacket was described as a long high-vis orange jacket, the bottom third of which was dark blue with a reflective band.
A man in his 20s and a 33-year-old man have since been arrested and released by police in connection with the murder.
The 18-year-old was found on Tagus Street, at the back of the shops on Lodge Lane, at around 8.30pm.
His killer is believed to have fired several shots towards the group Yusuf was stood with, though detectives do not think the gunman intended to kill the popular university hopeful.
Despite several high-profile appeals from police and his family, no-one has been charged with the murder.
His parents Khadija and Papice Sonko have never given up campaigning for justice for their son and this year marched through Liverpool in his memory.
In an open letter written a year on from his brutal murder, his family wrote: “No one from our community, not his friends, no mother, sister, brother or father has yet had the courage to come forward, to give evidence, to bring the person who killed my boy to justice.
“We are writing this letter to appeal to you, to our community members, to come forward with any information to bring the killer of Yusuf to face justice.”
A number of men have been arrested in connection with the murder, however investigations are still on-going.
Aaron Lewis was shot repeatedly by a gunman on Grovesnor Street, in Wavertree, on February 1 last year.
The 26-year-old was hit up to eight times moments after buying a meal at Anna Jungs chippy.
The bricklayer, a kickboxing world champion at the age of 11, was rushed to Aintree Hospital but died from his injuries.
Two guns have been recovered by officers – a 9mm handgun and a 44 calibre revolver – which they say were both used during the murder.
And so far police have made one arrest – a 27-year-old man, from Wavertree – who was questioned and then released on bail.
Since his death his dad, Alfie Lewis, urged people to stop staying silent and reveal key points of evidence that will help put his son’s killer behind bars.
He said: “It’s hard knowing the animal and scum that killed my son is still out there, on the streets.”
Kevin Wilson was just 17-years-old when he was murdered in cold blood three years ago.
On February 7, 2015, he was fatally shot in the back, at the junction of Smithdown Road and Holmes Street in Wavertree.
And although 13 people have been arrested as part of the investigation, his murder remains unsolved.
Curtis Connick, 31, was jailed in 2016 for theft and perverting the course of justice after he took Kevin’s phone – minutes after the teenager was shot.
Another teenager Malcolm Graham was jailed in August 2017, after footage of him shooting the Russian made Baikal automatic pistol which killed Kevin was found on his phone.
However police concluded that he was not involved in Kevin’s murder.
At the time detectives believed the attack on Kevin could have been linked to a drugs rivalry.
His heartbroken mum Jane told the ECHO on the third year anniversary of his death: “Although time has passed, dealing with the loss of Kevin never gets easier.
“Those responsible took my son, an irreplaceable person in my life.
“I really hope whoever did this finds it in their heart to come forward and give us the reason why.”
The 25-year-old was found strangled, bound and wrapped in a bin bag washed up on a Spanish beach, weeks after he appeared to have been kidnapped by bogus cops in Alicante in 2014.
The gas fitter was last seen being stopped by at least three men in the town of Javea as he travelled between his home and the gym.
He was reported missing days later and his body was found bound and with a severe head wound on a beach on March 16, 2014.
In an inquest in May this year Coroner Andre Rebello told the hearing at the Gerard Majella Courthouse that he had “no doubt” that Mr Brennan had been “unlawfully killed”.
However no-one has been charged over his death.
Karl Bradley was shot four times and his body left in the snow in the back garden of a property in Penshaw Close, West Derby.
It wasn’t until 7am the next day that he was found, about eight hours after he had been shot, on March 22, 2013.
Mr Bradley was the brother of notorious guns and grenade gangster Kirk Bradley – who is serving a life sentence with a minimum of 22 years.
At the time of the murder Merseyside Police said they believed Karl’s murder was a targeted attack – but no clear motive for the killing has ever been established.
And despite four people having been arrested on suspicion of his murder during the five years since his death, no charges have been made.
No pictures or tribute were ever released by the family.
Jamie Starkey was shot six times, outside his home in Fazakerley, on December 2, 2012.
Moments before his cold-blooded murder Jamie had promised his seven-year-old sister they would decorate the family’s Christmas tree.
Seconds later, at around 7.50pm, he lay fatally injured on the roadside after being shot four times in the chest and twice in the head.
This month was seven years since Jamie was killed by what Merseyside Police believe was a lone gunman.
Five people have been arrested and questioned as part of the murder investigation – however Jamie’s family are still no closer to seeing his killer behind bars.
Jamie’s dad Richard told the ECHO despite his son’s history with notorious drug dealer Daniel Gee and the Grizedale crew he believes there is another “viable suspect” not linked with the gang, who killed their son.
Richard said: “I know it’s difficult and these people rule with a rod of fear.
“But if you have any information that can result in the conviction of these evil people I suggest you speak to the police as soon as.”
A wall of silence shields the gunman who killed Joseph Thompson in a street execution.
The dad-of-four died from multiple shot wounds in 2012, after a gunman showered him and a friend with bullets in Norris Green.
The 32-year-old was on Ravensthorpe Green on June 14, when he and 27-year-old Kevin Murray, who survived, were shot at.
Mr Thompson was known to police and understood to be a member of the Strand Gang.
And his murder, police believed, was the result of in-fighting between gang members.
However despite this knowledge and four men being arrested, no-one has yet been charged.
CCTV images at the time of the incident were circulated by police and the occupants of a dark-coloured Citreon C4, seen being driven around the area, could still prove vital to solving the crime.
Joey Cummins was shot and killed on January 20, 2011, outside the house he lived in with his nan on Longmoor Lane, Fazakerley.
The killing became known as the ‘murder in the mist’ as the gunman used dense fog as his cover to hide his identity.
Five people have been arrested and questioned over Joey’s murder, but all were released on bail and nobody has been charged.
In the moments before he was shot, Joey had been getting in a Delta cab, driven by his friend, at around 9pm, when he was shot three times in the back.
He staggered and collapsed outside a car sales shop where police officers, travelling down Longmoor Lane, found him seriously injured.
He was taken to hospital but died from his injuries.
Over the years his mum Carol has pleaded for anyone with any information regarding her son’s murder to come forward.
On the seventh anniversary of his death this year she told the ECHO: “I think to myself I could be walking down the street past the person who killed my son.
“Can anyone at all that knows anything about my son’s death come forward with whatever you know?
“It just gets harder each year.”
Edward Pybis, 20, was gunned down in a Norris Green drive-by shooting.
Known as Eddie to friends and family, he was blasted as he sat in the passenger seat of a silver Volvo, which was being driven along Utting Avenue.
He died from his injuries in hospital six days later.
Eight people have been arrested over the killing, but no-one has ever been charged.
Detectives believe the identity of those behind the shooting is well known among the city’s gangland underworld.
Sadly his mum Mary Pybis, died in 2013, aged 56, without ever seeing justice done for he son.
Two key factors in solving the case is the movements of a black BMW 7 series car – DX57 UHU – which was used by the killers.
Police have also sought two men seen in a dark coloured saloon car, who were involved in an “altercation” with passengers inside a silver Ford Focus – registration NH57 HKX – earlier on the same day.
Colin Hughes was stabbed to death in his garden after disturbing an intruder.
The dad-of-one was killed outside his home, on Baden Road in Old Swan, on September 21, 2010.
He had gone outside to investigate a noise at around 12.50am, when his killer stabbed him in the chest.
His heartbroken fiancé Paula Greenwood cradled his bleeding body until an ambulance arrived, but he died shortly after from a single stab wound.
Police have arrested and questioned 10 people over the 42-year-old’s murder, however no-one has been charged.
His fiancée Paula Greenwood spoke to the ECHO in September as she prepared to celebrate what would have been his 50th birthday.
Paula said: “I still love him and I will never, ever forget him.
“It’s hard to think I may be out drinking with people who know what happened to Colin.
“Because he was born and bred in Old Swan – and someone knows something – yet no-one has come forward.
“If you have any information, you can come forward anonymously, you won’t get in trouble, but we just want this solved.”
The gunmen who killed a 23-year-old in front of his girlfriend in a drive-by shooting have never been found.
Paul Pike, from Belle Vale, was shot to death as he sat at traffic lights behind the wheel of a red Ford Transit van, eight-years-ago.
The van was on Crosby Road North at its junction with South Road when a silver stolen Audi TT, pulled up alongside and the gunmen riddled it with bullets.
It is thought the shooters then pulled away, turned around and came back towards the van firing further shots.
Since the shooting, on June 5, 2010, Merseyside Police have made a number of arrests and a £10,000 reward was offered in return for information leading to a conviction.
If you have been affected by any of the details mentioned in this story there are people who can help you.
Most people grieve when they lose something or someone important to them.
The way grief affects you depends on lots of things, including what kind of loss you have suffered, your upbringing, your beliefs or religion, your age, your relationships, and your physical and mental health.
Grieving is a totally normal process but there are way to get help if you need support.
Your GP is a good place to start. They can give you advice about other support services, refer you to a counsellor, or prescribe medication if needed.
A 27-year-old, 26-year-old, two 24-year-olds and a 23-year-old have all been arrested during the course of police’s investigations.
In 2011 Lee Morgan, 24, was jailed after his DNA was found on the self-loading pistol which was used in the shooting of Mr Pike.
He claimed he found it in the woods and took it to the home of friend Tricia O’Hara, in Kilburn Close, Toxteth.
She was jailed for five years for providing a safe house for the lethal weapon.
Neither were linked to Paul Pike’s murder.
Mr Pike was known to police and was previously locked up for four years following a robbery at the home of a Chinese restaurant owner.
One line of enquiry during the investigation was that the murder was possibly linked to a spate of tit-for-tat shootings at the end of 2009 and the start of 2010.
The 46-year-old was gunned down on South Cantril Avenue in West Derby on April 29, 2010.
Before his murder the dad-of-two had been at his mother-in-law’s house, where he had dinner and watched Crimewatch on TV, before heading out at around 9.30pm.
In the hours that followed, the Sunday league football manager met up with a friend on Meadow Lane, before going to a chip shop at around 11.30pm.
At 12.30 he returned to his mother-in-law’s street, where he was met by his killer who shot him seven times at close range.
For the past eight years Mr Ayers’ killer, who fled the scene after the shooting, has evaded justice.
To date 17 people have been arrested in connection with the murder and the ECHO understands numerous calls giving the name of the killer and those behind the murder have been made to police.
However no-one has been willing to give a formal statement or stand up in court, so no charges have been brought.
Merseyside Police still believe a silver-coloured car seen being driven erratically on Princess Drive, near the scene and anyone who saw a motorbike in the area soon after the killing, could hold vital clues in solving the case.
Anyone with information regarding Mr Ayers death is to contact detectives on 0800 230 0600.
Sean Finnan was murdered as he attempted to retrieve his little brother’s stolen bike.
His mum Rose last year spoke out for the first time since her “one in a million” son’s death and urged anyone with details to help end her family’s suffering.
The 22-year-old died on January 9, 2009 – four days after being stabbed in the leg and beaten over the head with a metal bar during a brutal assault by a group of men in Stockbridge Village.
He was attacked in Barons Hey at around 8pm after travelling to the area from his Childwall home to recover a bike stolen from his 14-year-old brother Patrick.
There is a £10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the murder.
Mum Rose said: “The fact his killers remain at large compounds our grief and we maintain our belief there are people who have information in relation to Sean’s death who have not come forward.
“I appeal to the people of Liverpool, and especially the residents of Barons Hey in Stockbridge Village, to examine their conscience and contact the police if they have any information in relation to the attack on Sean.”
Colin Smith was shot dead in a brutal attack when the Halewood businessman was lured to his death outside Nel’s Gym, in Speke, on November 13, 2007, in a suspected gangland hit.
In the aftermath of his death, rumours swirled that he was the successor of notorious Curtis Warren and that his execution had been ordered by a Columbian cartel over a £72m cocaine dispute.
The dad-of-six was shot twice in the stomach at close range with a pump-action shotgun after taking his son to football practice.
Mr Smith’s assassin, who lay in wait in a service road near the Mill House pub, has never been caught.
Underworld figures suggested a suspected foreign mercenary flew into Liverpool to carry out the killing on behalf of the feared Cali Cartel – before leaving through John Lennon airport.
But that account was rubbished by Mr Smith’s grieving mum Phyllis who said: “People in Speke killed Colin – it wasn’t Colombians. The rats in Speke did that dirty deed to my son.”
Detective Superintendent Karen Cummings believes rifts among Liverpool’s criminal community could help to solve the murder.
Anyone with information is to contact the murder investigation team on 0151 777 8655.
A gunman who shot a dad dead in what could have been an underworld execution is still at large eight years on.
Grandad James Stanton was shot in the back and head while sat in an office at work.
The dad-of-four was killed on July 2, 2006 at Aintree Commercial Vehicles on Ormskirk Road.
Detectives probing the incident believe the assassins intended to target the company, but that the Thornton grandad may not have been the intended victim.
Officers believe two men were responsible for his murder and that they left the scene in a blue Toyota Avensis (registration DM53 MKK), stolen from Sefton Street, Liverpool, two months before the murder.
The vehicle was found burnt out on Blindfoot Road, Rainford, the following day.
After his murder a chilling CCTV image of a masked gunman entering the Aintree firm was released.
Also among the appeals for information was a feature on Crimewatch – which prompted 10 calls to the police.
A number of them named the same person as being connected with the shooting, and a black Vauxhall Vectra – registration number KN53 YHL – spotted in Lathom Road, Huyton, was identified as being possibly connected with the case.
His widow Jean told the ECHO: “I still struggle with the question of why this happened to Jim and would ask anybody who has any information to please contact the police.
“As a family we have tried to move forward. Jim left for work 10 years ago for just another day in the office and never came home.”
In 2015, 10 years after Liverpool sailor Anthony Cavanah was killed, a man was arrested on suspicion of his murder.
However the 33-year-old was released on bail and the case remains open.
Anthony, a 22-year-old Royal Navy seaman, was on weekend leave from his ship and had travelled up from Portsmouth to Liverpool to see friends and relatives.
As he left Walkabout bar, in Concert Square, Anthony accidentally bumped into a group of men and despite apologising profusely, one of them threw beer over him.
Later that evening as he left the club, he was targeted by one of the group who punched him.
Tragically Anthony fell to the floor, hitting his head on the ground and suffered massive head injuries, from which he died 11 days later on October 5, 2005.
Previously Anthony’s mum Pat Cavanagh said she can’t even start to move on while her son’s killer is still walking around.
Young mum Lucy Hargreaves was murdered in one of Merseyside’s most brutal unsolved killings.
The mum-of-three was sleeping on the living room sofa at her home in Lambourne Road on August 3, 2005, when the killers struck.
Three masked men burst into the address armed with a sawn-off shotgun and shot her twice in the stomach and once to the head, from close range.
They then set the home alight, possibly to try to cover up the murder.
Gary Campbell, Lucy’s boyfriend, was sleeping upstairs with the couple’s youngest daughter Faye, and it is believed he could have been the intended target.
He escaped the blaze by jumping with his daughter from an upstairs window.
He left the youngster with a neighbour, went back inside the burning house and pulled Lucy out, but she had died from the gunshot wounds.
Speculation remains over whether the killers knew they were shooting at Lucy as part of their grudge with Campbell, or if it was a case of mistaken identity and they genuinely thought they were killing her boyfriend.
Her face was possibly covered with a sheet, which could have obscured her identity – but police today said they were sure Lucy’s killers knew exactly what they were doing.
Police continue to hunt Kevin Parle over Lucy’s death.
Parle is suspected of involvement in Lucy’s death, as well of that of 16-year-old Liam Kelly in Dingle.
Police believe Craig Eaton was a victim of mistaken identity when he was gunned down and killed in 2004.
The 22-year-old was shot as he walked along Molyneux Road, Kensington, at about 11.15pm on February 24.
The Alder Hey Children’s Hospital worker was shot twice shortly after he got off a bus on his way to a friend’s.
Detectives investigating his murder have previously said they were convinced figures linked to the criminal underworld would know the killer’s identity.
They also believed he was followed by his killer and was almost certainly the innocent victim of a gangland hit gone wrong.
In the relatively early stages, detectives spoke to two people who came forward believing they were the intended target, including one man who matches Craig’s description.
In earlier appeals police said they wanted to know the movements of a dark green Ford Mondeo, registration number Y723 RJA – and a silver or light-blue Volvo 740 GL saloon car which had the registration plate G690 NFR.
Those close to Lyndon Nowell believe he could have been killed by underworld figures after he disappeared 15 years ago.
He left the house at around 5.30pm on Thursday January 24, 2002 and was last seen in the Coronation pub, Childwall , at around 8.45pm where he met a man to collect a debt.
His car, a silver Ford Focus hire car – registration SA51 YNM – was found torched on Blantyre Road, in Swinton, Greater Manchester, the following day.
In the days that followed canals were dredged and gardens dug up.
Reported sightings in both Spain and Holland provided no leads.
More than 18 years ago Richard Clayton was gunned down outside a gym in Aigburth.
Known as Richie to friends and family the 30-year-old was shot on Belgrave Road, just before 8pm on July 25, 2001.
The dad-of-two was chased by his attackers who fired several shots after pulling up in a green Ford Mondeo, later found set alight.
He ran to a house in a bid to escape but collapsed and sadly died.
His twin sister Julie told the ECHO in 2016 how seeing her brother’s killers caught would “bring some closure” to his devastated family.