Birmingham & Black Country

Ladywood murder probe after 18-year-old shot dead

Kenichi Phillips Image copyright Facebook
Image caption The victim has been named locally as Kenichi Phillips

A teenager has been shot dead in a Birmingham street.

A man, 22, has been arrested on suspicion of murder after the 18-year-old was found in St Marks Crescent, Ladywood, at 18:45 GMT on Thursday.

The victim, named locally as Kenichi Phillips, was from Birmingham but had moved away, said police.

It is the fourth fatal shooting in the city since October, but "it is too early to speculate if it was gang-related," said Det Supt Mark Payne.

"There were a group of people in the street we want to come forward."

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Mr Phillips had been driving a black Seat Leon before his death, said police.

Image caption A murder investigation has been opened into the attack

In January, police expressed "great concerns" over a spike in gun crime in Birmingham.

Chief Constable Dave Thompson said he had not known such frequent shootings during his five years with the West Midlands force.

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Media captionPolice guard scene of teenager shooting in Birmingham

However, overall gun crime figures for the city dropped from 524 in 2014 to 357 in 2015.

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Media captionBirmingham Teenage shooting: Family 'devastated'

Det Supt Payne said while there has been a recent surge of gun crime in the city he could not pinpoint a single root cause.

The force has secured 80 firearms-related convictions since the beginning of the year and taken 38 guns off the streets, he said.

Fatal shootings in Birmingham

Image caption Flowers are laid close to the spot where the teenager was found dead

The victim's family was "devastated" said Det Supt Payne.

"This is the loss of an 18-year-old child. It's a tragic event. We've seen too many of these events and too many distraught families in these circumstances," he added.

Image caption Forensics teams are at the scene of a shooting in Ladywood which left an teenager dead

Talking to the BBC at the scene, community campaigner Desmond Jaddoo said: "This is a residential area. It's where [families] are and it's happening in the street. It's a concern.

"There are times when [gun crime] appears to be treated as the flavour of the month.

"There are knife [amnesty] bins all around the place but if anyone knows someone who has a gun, we need them to encourage others to hand them in."

Image caption Community campaigners have called for action over the gun crime spike

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