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Murder investigation launched after woman dies in suspected shooting

The victim is believed to be 19 years old.

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Police officers at the scene on King Street, Blackburn (Peter Byrne/PA)

Police officers at the scene on King Street, Blackburn (Peter Byrne/PA)

Police officers at the scene on King Street, Blackburn (Peter Byrne/PA)

Lancashire Police have launched a murder investigation following the death of a woman from a suspected gunshot wound on Sunday.

Officers were called shortly after 3pm to King Street, Blackburn, following reports a woman was unresponsive and gunshots had been heard in the area.

The woman, who is believed to be a 19-year-old from Blackburn, was taken to hospital but later died.

A post-mortem will take place in due course but police currently believe the cause of death was a gunshot wound.

Her family have now been informed of her death and they are understandably utterly, utterly distraught.Detective Chief Inspector Jonathan Holmes

It was reported that a vehicle, thought to be a light coloured or metallic green Toyota Avensis, was seen leaving the scene.

A car matching the description was later recovered from Wellington Road and police are appealing for anyone who may have seen the car to contact them.

Detective Chief Inspector Jonathan Holmes, of the Force Major Investigation Team, said: “This is a truly shocking and senseless killing, which has robbed a young woman of her life.

“Although the victim has yet to be formally identified, we believe she was a young woman from the local area.

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The victim is believed to be a 19-year-old woman (Peter Byrne/PA)

The victim is believed to be a 19-year-old woman (Peter Byrne/PA)

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The victim is believed to be a 19-year-old woman (Peter Byrne/PA)

“Her family have now been informed of her death and they are understandably utterly, utterly distraught.

“An investigation has been launched and we are determined to find those responsible – and we are asking for the public’s help identifying the offender or offenders.”

He continued: “We know that King Street will have been busy around the time of the incident and we are confident there is someone, or several people, out there who know what happened.

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Officers are continuing their inquiries (Peter Byrne/PA)

Officers are continuing their inquiries (Peter Byrne/PA)

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Officers are continuing their inquiries (Peter Byrne/PA)

“We understand people may be reluctant to come forward during this time, especially if they have not been following the Government guidelines about staying at home, but we would reassure them that our immediate concern is to find out what happened.”

Mr Holmes urged anyone with information or any footage of the incident to come forward.

He also reassured residents that additional patrols, including armed officers, have been deployed in the area.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the police on 101, quoting log number 817 of May 17.

Alternatively, information can be provided anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

PA