Man, 22, is charged with murdering beautician Elle Edwards, 26, who was shot dead in a pub in Merseyside on Christmas Eve
- Connor Chapman, from Wirral, has been charged with murdering Elle Edwards
- Ms Edwards, 26, was shot at the Lighthouse pub in Wallasey Village, Wirral
- She had been celebrating Christmas with her friends prior to the shooting
- A 23-year-old woman who was arrested previously has been released on bail
A man has been charged with the murder of Elle Edwards, who was killed on Christmas Eve in Wallasey.
Ms Edwards, 26, was celebrating Christmas in the Lighthouse Inn in Wallasey, a village near Liverpool, with her sister and friends when she was shot in the head at around 11.50pm.
She was killed by a gunman after getting caught up in what is believed to be a feud among drugs gangs.
Police have said the young beautician was not the intended target of the gunfire, which was understood to have been fired as part of a revenge hit gone wrong.
Connor Chapman, 22, of Houghton Road, Woodchurch has also been charged with two counts of attempted murder and three counts of unlawful and malicious wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm, possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life, possession of ammunition with intent to endanger life and handling stolen goods, namely a Mercedes A Class.
He has been remanded in custody to appear at Wirral Adult Remand Court today, Friday, January 13.
A 23-year-old woman arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender has been released on bail pending further enquiries.
Elle Edwards, 26, (pictured) was killed on December 24 at the Lighthouse pub in Wallasey Village near Liverpool
Detectives have charged a man with the murder of Elle Edwards in Wallasey on Christmas Eve
Flowers and tribute messages were left outside the Lighthouse Inn following the shooting on Christmas Eve
Her younger sister, Lucy Edwards, paid tribute to the 26-year-old beautician, saying she ‘shouldn’t be waking up on New Year’s Day without you’ Pictured: Elle (right) and her sister Lucy (left)
Speaking on January 11 following the arrest of Chapman, Detective Superintendent Sue Coombs said: ‘This brings the number of arrests in connection with the tragic death of Elle to five.
‘Although extensive work is going on from our dedicated teams across Merseyside Police and a great deal of intelligence has come in, I would still ask that anyone who has information and has yet to come forward, does so.
‘If they don’t want to speak to police directly then please get in touch with Crimestoppers where information can be given in confidence.’
A spokesperson for Merseyside Police added: ‘Detectives investigating the murder of Elle Edwards in Wallasey on Christmas Eve have arrested a man on suspicion of murder.
‘Following enquiries in mid-Wales, a 22-year-old man from Wirral was arrested on suspicion of murder.
‘A 23-year-old woman also from Wirral was arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender. Both have been taken to police stations for questioning.’
Three people had already been arrested in connection with the murder probe.
A 31-year-old man from Tranmere, Wirral, and a 19-year-old woman from Rock Ferry, Wirral, were held on suspicion of conspiracy to murder and bailed pending further inquiries.
Floral tributes are left outside the Lighthouse Inn in Wallasey Village, near Liverpool, on Boxing Day
At the inquest on January 5 at the Gerard Majella Courthouse in Liverpool, coroner Anita Bhardwaj said: ‘This is such a tragic death of a beautiful young woman who clearly had a bright future ahead of her and so much to offer both in her career as well as personally.
‘We all appreciate, I think, as parents, nothing can prepare us for the death of a child in any way, shape or form and I think we can only imagine what the parents and family are going through.’
Ms Edwards, whose occupation was given as dental nurse/beautician, was pronounced dead at Arrowe Park Hospital on Christmas Day after being taken there from the pub.
Ms Bhardwaj said: ‘Others were also shot at that location but sadly Elle was the one that lost her life.’
A provisional cause of death was given as gunshot wounds to the head.
Ms Bhardwaj said she would release Ms Edwards’ body to her family.
Toxicology analysis would be carried out before a full post-mortem report, she said.
The inquest was adjourned to May 5, when Ms Bhardwaj said there would be an update on the police investigation.
Elle Edwards father, Tim Edwards, during a press conference at Merseyside Police Headquarters in Liverpool about the Christmas Eve shooting of his daughter
In an extraordinary and moving statement her father wrote: ‘She loved her life and had so many amazing plans for the future. There was no one as beautiful as our Elle May’.
Mr Edwards added: ‘We will love and miss her forever. Our Elle May, the most beautiful and bright star out there, forever and always. My beautiful Elle Marlene is the love of my life and she is my world, my best friend. She will always shine and be beautiful and bright’.
Her younger sister Lucy Edwards, wrote an emotional tribute on social media, which said: ‘I should not be waking up this morning on New Year’s Day without you.’
Taking to Instagram to share a reel of photos and videos of her sister, Lucy wrote: ‘I miss you so much sis. Elle May you are and will always be my best friend, side kick, partner in crime, soul mate and big sister.
‘You are beautiful inside and out, you are the kindest person ever and you wanted nothing but the best for me.
‘I miss everything about you, especially our daily catch ups, our long drives, we’d blast the music and sing so loud that people in traffic would be laughing at us, but we were always in our own bubble and we didn’t care.’