THIS is the first picture of a nine-year-old girl stabbed to death as she played with a toy pushchair in a quiet lane yesterday evening.
Lilia Valutyte’s body was discovered in in Boston, Lincolnshire, after she was fatally wounded at around 6.20pm.
Cops and paramedics dashed to Fountain Lane, but tragically, Lilia couldn’t be saved.
Lincolnshire Police have launched a murder probe. Two men have been arrested in connection with the little one’s death.
One resident said a doll’s pushchair was lying on its side in the road as medics desperately tried to save Lilia’s life, the Telegraph reports.
It’s understood cops are combing CCTV following reports a man was seen running from the scene of the attack.
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Witnesses say Lilia was playing with her sister in the moments before her death.
One local woman said: “The little girl was playing in the street with her younger sister when it happened. They had some toys out.
“I’m sure her mum wouldn’t have been far away as she always checked on them. She was a very quiet girl, and I just can’t understand it.”
In an update this afternoon, Chief Superintendent Kate Anderson refused to confirm any more details on the arrested men.
Speaking to reporters near the police cordon at the scene this morning, the senior officer described Lilia’s death as an “utter tragedy”.
She said: “A nine-year-old girl has died of what we believe to be the result of a stab wound. We’ve arrested two people in connection with the incident.
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“We believe this to be an isolated incident and we are pursuing extensive lines of enquiry and have committed a number of resources to this investigation.”
She added a “high number of specialist detectives” have been called in to help with the investigation.
She declined to comment further on whether those arrested were adults or juveniles. It’s also not yet known what they are being held on suspicion of.
She said: “We have a number of active lines of inquiry.
“It would be unfair for me to speculate on potential motives.”
Heartbroken locals have expressed their horror at the “most shocking tragedy to ever befall their town,” with many residents leaving floral tributes near the scene.
One bouquet of pink roses left nearby read: “So sorry this cruel world has taken your life beautiful girl.
“May you be in the arms of the angels.”
Taxi driver Jonathan Newton, 55, said: “We are a close knit community here and the town is rocked to the core by this tragedy.
‘JUST A LITTLE GIRL’
“She was just a little girl, how could anyone do this to a nine-year-old?
“It’s the most shocking tragedy to ever befall our little town. I’m just speechless.”
Another local resident, who did not wish to be named, added: “I just pray whoever did this is caught fast. My heart is breaking for that girl’s parents.
“I’ve seen people who don’t even know the family in floods of tears today.”
One business owner who cut the victim’s hair just days ago, said: “This is just a sick joke.
“She was so little. I was only cutting her hair days ago.
“There is no humanity left in this place – none. For someone to do this is inhuman.”
She was just a little girl, how could anyone do this to a nine-year-old?
Someone else added: “This is beyond a parent’s worst nightmare.”
A fifth said: “Scary, scary world. Makes you not want to let your children go out and play.”
Cops say the tragic victim’s family have been told of her death and will be supported by officers.
And the tragedy follows a weekend of bloodshed in London, where three people were killed in less than 24 hours, with another badly injured.
It is not be the first time a young girl has been stabbed to death in Britain, with the horrific murder of 12-year-old Ava White, who was stabbed to death by a 14-year-old lad, taking place in Liverpool last November.
Home Office figures from 2016 found the port town of Boston was then the murder capital of England and Wales.
It came top of a list of the local authorities with the most cases of murder, attempted murder or conspiracy to commit murder per 100,000 people, Mail Online reports.
‘PARENT’S WORST NIGHTMARE’
One dad, whose 12-year-old son Roberts Buncis was stabbed to death in the area two years ago begged for answers this morning.
Addressing the loved ones of Boston’s latest victim, he said: “Dear family, you will go through the hell, be strong, take any help you can get.
“My son was stabbed to death 12/12/2020 and I still live with that and think it never will end. It’s so sad.
“Where are we going, what is wrong with this world, what is wrong with Boston … I would tell you thousands of words but don’t know what to say … be strong, love those who you have.”
Meanwhile, Matt Warman MP, for Boston and Skegness, said his thoughts were with the young girl’s family.
He said: “Profoundly shocking news in Boston this evening. My thoughts are with the family of the girl involved – if you have any information that might help the police with their ongoing investigation please use the contact details below.
“I have spoken to senior officers locally and am hugely grateful for all the emergency services’ work.”
He added: “I would ask that people refrain from speculating while this hugely important police investigation is ongoing.
“It is vital that those responsible are brought to justice.”
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Anyone with information is urged to call 101, quoting incident 419 of July 28.
Those wishing to remain anonymous can report via the independent charity CrimeStoppers on 0800 555 111 or online.