Man, 22, in court for murder of girl, 9, stabbed while playing in street

The man accused of murdering nine-year-old Lilia Valutyte has appeared in court for the first time.

Deividas Skebas, 22, was remanded into custody at Lincoln Magistrates’ Court after being charged with murder.

He spoke only to confirm his name, date of birth and address during a short hearing at court this morning.

Lilia was stabbed to death while she and her sister played with a hula-hoop outside a café in Boston, Lincolnshire, on Thursday.

Skebas’ former girlfriend, Beata Sapuskaite, 23, said he is from an “upper class” family in Lithuania.

She claims he came to England to make money and was employed in “field work”.

Ms Sapuskaite added that he was not working for Lilia’s mum Lina Savicke, who runs a job agency called MS Agricultural Services, The Times reports.

The Mirror previously reported how a witness claimed a suspect attempted to flee officers on Saturday.

However, another neighbour seemed to contradict this account, claiming the man did not resist or attempt to run away from police.

Witness Nedas Mikelionis, 24, earlier told The Sun on Sunday: “The street was suddenly filled with police running everywhere.

“The guy they were after ran for it and police came pouring out of the house they had gone to and leapt in their cars to give chase.

“It looks as though he bolted through a back garden, then tried to escape into a park.”

He added that at least 20 officers, including armed police, were involved in the arrest.

Mr Mikelionis said he saw a police drone hovering above the scene and he thinks it was used to help officers track the suspect.

However, another neighbour contradicted Mr Mikelionis’ claims about the suspect fleeing.

They told Mail Online: “I looked out of the window and saw police arrive in several marked and unmarked cars, and a load of armed officers coming out.
“They shouted out, “Any occupants, come out of the front door, and let us see your hands”.

“It took about five minutes for the guy to come out. I didn’t see him resisting or trying to run away. They asked him what his name was, and then one of them said: ‘I am arresting you on suspicion of murder’.”

Confirming that Skebas had been charged with murder, a Lincolnshire Police spokesman said: “We have this evening (31 July) charged 22-year-old Deividas Skebas with the murder of nine-year-old Lilia Valutyte.”

Chief Superintendent Martyn Parker said: “This is a heartbreaking case that has affected many people in Boston, and further afield. Our thoughts continue to be with Lilia’s family at this exceptionally difficult time.

“The response to such a devastating incident has involved committing significant resources to the investigation, and engaging with people in Boston who are understandably shocked by Lilia’s death.

“Our officers have been in the town, speaking to the public and listening to their concerns. We’ll continue to maintain a significant presence over the coming days.

“Finally, I’d like to extend my thanks once again to the public and the media, who have provided help in a challenging and fast-moving case.

“Your support is appreciated by our officers and staff.”

Lincolnshire Police launched a huge manhunt after Lilia was stabbed on Thursday.

Skebas, of Thorold Street, Boston, will appear at Lincoln Crown Court later on Monday.