Aya Hachem death: Three men arrested over shooting of teenage law student in Blackburn

Salford University student, 19, not believed to have been intended target of drive-by attack on Sunday afternoon

Monday 18 May 2020 22:31 BST
Police believe Aya Hachem was an innocent bystander in the shooting which killed her
Police believe Aya Hachem was an innocent bystander in the shooting which killed her (PA)

Three men have been arrested on suspicion of murdering 19-year-old law student Aya Hachem, who died after she was shot in Blackburn.

Lancashire Police on Monday said the arrests had followed a public appeal for information and that the men, aged 39, 33 and 36 and from Blackburn, were being held in police custody.

Hachem is not believed to have been the intended target of the attack in a main road in Blackburn on Sunday afternoon.

The teenager was hit by one of several shots fired from a passing car as she walked to a Lidl supermarket to buy food for her family.

Detective Superintendent Andy Cribbin from Lancashire’s Force Major Investigation Team (FMIT) said: “We are on with a number of lines of inquiry which includes looking at CCTV in the area and we have spoken to a number of key witnesses.

“Despite that, and the arrests, this is a live investigation and I am asking anyone who might know anything about what happened, or the circumstances leading up to Aya being senselessly killed to speak to us.

“Any piece of information, no matter how insignificant it may seem, could prove vital to our investigation.”

Ms Hachem, a second-year student at the University of Salford, died in hospital from a single gunshot wound a short time after emergency services were called to the scene in King Street at about 3pm.

Her distraught parents said she was the “most loyal devoted daughter” who enjoyed spending time with her family.

They added she dreamt of becoming a solicitor and had been learning to drive.

A number of people were travelling in the light green Toyota Avensis from which the shots were fired, police said.

The vehicle, with the registration number SV53 UBP, was abandoned a short time later in nearby Wellington Road and was seized for forensic examination, detectives said.

Police are appealing for anyone who saw the car or have mobile phone, CCTV or dashcam footage taken in the area between 10am and 4pm to come forward.

Detectives also want to hear from anyone who has information about who had been using the car on the day or in the weeks before.

Anybody with information should contact 101, quoting log number 0412 of May 18th, or anonymously via independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Additional reporting by PA

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