Teenagers sentenced for 'wicked' murder of Liverpool man in gang attack

Prosecutors were unable to prove who struck the fatal blow in the brutal attack

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The Independent Online

Five teenagers described as a “marauding mob” have been sentenced for the brutal murder of a young man in a Liverpool launderette last year.

The baby-faced gang stabbed Sean McHugh to death at an Anfield launderette where he sought refuge inside the shop's back room and begged for help.

CCTV of the attack showed the teenagers entering the launderette armed with a sword stick, which they used to stab Mr McHugh in the leg, severing his main artery. He died in hospital days after police him bleeding on the floor.

Reese O'Shaughnessy, 19, was jailed for a minimum of 18 years in prison alongside Andrew Hewitt, 15, Keyfer Dykstra, Corey Hewitt and Joseph McGill, all 14, who will serve between six and 12 years in prison.

Passing sentence, Judge Clement Goldstone said: "Each of you has been convicted of the murder of Sean McHugh, a truly wicked attack in which each of you played different roles."

An emotional Lorraine McHugh said the death of her son, who was 19 at the time, had destroyed their lives and denied he was involved in a rival gang.

The court heard Dykstra, who belonged to a gang known as the Lane Heads, had been stabbed in the chest months earlier and had vowed to "avenge" the attack.

Detective Chief Inspector Andy O'Connor, said: "The suffering Sean endured before his death and the pain and heartbreak inflicted on his family can never be taken back.

But I hope that the sentencing of these young men today brings Sean's family a sense of closure and justice, and sends out a clear message that violence such as this is not tolerated by Merseyside Police, nor the communities we serve."