Authorities on Friday identified the five people gunned down by a crazed killer in the UK — including a dad who witnesses said died while trying in vain to shield his 3-year-old daughter.
Little Sophie Martyn and her adopted father, Lee Martyn, 43, were among those slaughtered by twisted 22-year-old Jake Davidson during Thursday’s bloodbath, Devon & Cornwall police said in a statement.
Witnesses saw the dad trying to flee the gunman with his daughter, who was pushing a toy stroller, according to the Daily Mail.
“There was no noise or screaming, they were just running,” a witness told the outlet. “This bloke with the gun stopped about 15-feet from them, raised his gun to his shoulder, and shot the man in the back.”
“He fell on to his daughter, protecting her even though he may have been dying.”
Davidson “walked up and stood over them and fired from inches away to finish them off,” the witness said.
The slain dad and his wife — an intensive care nurse at Derriford hospital, where victims from the shooting were transported — had adopted Sophie when she was an infant, reported The Sun.
Davidson, who described himself as an American-born, virgin “incel” and compared himself to the Terminator online, first mercilessly murdered his mother, Maxine Chapman, 51, in their Plymouth home before running outside and killing the dad and daughter, according to cops.
He then continued down the street, shooting and injuring two other passers-by, before entering a park and gunning down Stephen Washington, 59, who was reportedly out walking his dog, and Kate Shepherd, 66, a retired mom of one, who was taken to a hospital and died of her injuries.
Washington’s son, Simon, paid tribute to his father in a statement online, according to The Sun, writing, “My mum lost her world. My kids and brothers and sister’s kids lost their granddad.”
“Each and every one of us will miss him deeply, RIP dad you will be missed, love you.”
The wounded passers-by were a 53-year-old woman and a 33-year-old man who knew each other. They were hospitalized and are expected to survive, according to police. They have not been identified.
Police say the gun used, a pump-action shotgun, was legally purchased and owned in 2020, which according to The Sun, are legal in the UK with a fixed magazine capacity of no more than three cartridges and a valid Shotgun certificate.
The deadly shooting spree was over in less than six minutes but was spread over 13 different crime scenes, according to the cops.
Davidson then turned the gun on himself before firearms officers could tackle him.
No motive for the senseless attack that has left a whole community in mourning has not yet been determined, Cornwall Police Chief Constable Shaun Sawyer said in a press conference on Friday.
“We believe we have an incident that is domestically related, that has spilled into the street and seen several people within Plymouth losing their lives in an extraordinarily tragic circumstance,” Sawyer told reporters Friday.
It was the deadliest mass shooting in the UK in more than a decade.
Davidson’s social media has revealed a troubled individual and brazen misogynist, according to law enforcement’s investigation.
Police said they were examining Davidson’s hard drives and online activity, which included a YouTube channel in which he regularly whined about being a “fat as f–k” virgin who had never kissed a girl, according to numerous UK reports.
Saying he was “getting uglier” and “defeated by life,” he related to incels, the “involuntary celibates” behind a series of devastating mass murders in the US and Canada.