Plymouth shooting: Hundreds gather at funeral to pay tribute to father and daughter victims

Lee and Sophie Martyn two of five killed in worst mass shooting in Britain for decade

Tim Wyatt
Monday 06 September 2021 20:38
<p>Mourners carrying a photograph of Lee and Sophie Martyn leave the church after the pair’s funeral in Plymouth</p>

Mourners carrying a photograph of Lee and Sophie Martyn leave the church after the pair’s funeral in Plymouth

Hundreds have gathered to mourn two of the victims of the Plymouth shootings as the funeral of father and daughter Lee and Sophie Martyn was held.

Many of the friends and family of the victims came to the Minster Church of St Andrew, in Plymouth city centre, on Monday to pay tribute to two of those killed in Britain’s worst shooting for a decade.

Lots of the mourners wore ink corsages, while others dressed in blue and white in honour of Mr Martyn’s favourite football team, Everton.

Mr Martyn, 43, and his three-year-old daughter Sophie were shot and killed by Jake Davison last month.

After killing his mother Maxine during an argument, the 22-year-old went out into the street and shot the pair with a shotgun as they were walking their dog.

Davison went on to murder two more passers-by before turning the gun on himself before armed police could reach him.

About 300 people filled the church during the funeral, with dozens of others waiting outside throughout the sombre service.

A single white coffin, containing both Mr Martyn and Sophie’s bodies, was taken into and out of the church by pallbearers.

Earlier, after they were killed, heartfelt tributes to the pair were paid by their grieving friends and family.

Mr Martyn’s cousin Jess Morcom said in a statement: “When someone passes it’s often the norm to say how they were the world’s nicest person etc etc, but I really do mean it from the bottom of my heart when I say that that was Lee.

“He had the kindest heart, would do anything for anybody and you only had to take one look at him to see how much he loved and adored his family, Bex and his children.”

Ms Morcom also expressed her devastation at the loss of three-year-old Sophie.

“My heart hurts so much thinking about how it should have been so many more. I will miss your cheekiness and your dancing the most.

“Beautiful little Soph my darling, how truly blessed we all were to have seen you grow into such a beautiful funny and clever girl for the three years that we had with you. I will think of you both every single day for the rest of my life.”

Although Davison legally purchased the shotgun used in the crimes for clay pigeon shooting in 2018, it was seized by police in December after he had admitted assaulting two youths in a park.

However, just five weeks before the shooting spree, Devon and Cornwall Police had given the shotgun and firearms licence back.

In response to the tragedy, the government is planning new statutory guidance, including asking doctors to undertake medical checks on anyone applying for a licence, and inquiries into social media usage.