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Liverpool Echo
Liverpool Echo
Adam Everett

Hail of bullets fired at Rio Jones' family home in feud sparked by murder

A hail of bullets was fired at a family home after a murder saw a circle of friends turn on each other.

The front window of the house on Jermyn Street in Toxteth, where Rio Jones lived with his parents and brother, was shot at up to 10 times amid the dispute. It was one of a series of incidents which sparked the 19-year-old into chasing and shooting a member of a rival group - with an innocent 15-year-old girl being caught in the crossfire.

He was this week convicted of attempted murder by a jury at Liverpool Crown Court. During his trial, Jones recounted from the witness box a string of attacks on him which he stated led to him seeking revenge.

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One came on the evening of November 21 2019, when a gunman opened fire on his address. Ten casings were found in the street, with nine bullet holes left in the front bay window.

Reports in the ECHO at the time documented how armed police swarmed on the area shortly before 9.30pm after eyewitnesses reported the shots being fired. But this was the only damage, with Jones having not been home at the time.

The street was cordoned off into the following day, with the road blocked between its junctions of Granby Street and Kingsley Road into the early hours - with Matrix officers and scientific support having also been called to the scene. Merseyside Police conducted house-to-house, forensic and CCTV enquires in the aftermath but the culprit was never caught.

Chief Inspector George Phillips said at the time: “At this early stage, we are gathering information as to the circumstances, who was responsible, how they left the scene and where they and the weapon is now. To fire towards a house is incredibly reckless, and it’s through luck alone that nobody has been seriously hurt."

Jones and his victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons and will instead be referred to as Male A by the ECHO, were previously part of a large group of friends which was fractured into two after one unnamed member of the circle was murdered in 2017. The defendant and the target ended up in opposing camps in this dispute.

The former was subsequently stabbed, chased by armed men, run over and shot at while his mum's car was vandalised, his dad's work van was torched and his home was even targeted in an arson attack. Jones believed the rival group was to blame, and after being pursued by men on electric bikes on the morning of March 1 this year sought vengeance.

In the early evening, he sought out Male A and chased him on his own e-bike before firing at him six times on Upper Warwick Street. He was shot in the arm and had to undergo emergency surgery.

Meanwhile, one bullet passed through the plastic sheeting of a nearby bus stop and hit the schoolgirl in the neck. This shot travelled through her body and out of her chest, causing lung damage and three fractured vertebrae and leading to 10 days in hospital.

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