Plymouth shooting: What happened and who are the victims? What we know so far

Six dead, including gunman, after mass shooting in Plymouth

Holly Bancroft,Zoe Tidman
Saturday 14 August 2021 11:24

Jake Davison named locally as Plymouth shooter

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Six people, including a gunman, have died in a shooting in Plymouth, with two others injured.

The atrocity, which happened shortly after 6pm on Thursday, is being treated as a domestic incident and not terror related.

However, the government’s terrorism adviser has now said that ‘incels,’ which the killer described himself as, could be treated as terrorists if more violent attacks occur.

Thursday’s attack was the first mass shooting to happen in the UK in 11 years.

What happened?

The shooting spree took place in the Keyham area of Plymouth on Thursday and lasted for around six minutes, according to police.

Devon and Cornwall Police receive reports of a “serious firearms incident” in Biddick Drive at around 6.11pm. Police said they received multiple calls from members of the public after residents heard gunshots.

Police arrived at the scene within six minutes to find bodies of several victims, as well as of the gunman.

Davison first shot his mother in an address on Biddick Drive. He left the property and opened fire on two people, including a young child, who both died.

The 22-year-old then shot two people further along the road, who were left injured.

Davison then proceeded to shoot dead a man in nearby parkland and then a woman in Henderson Place, who later died at Derriford Hospital.

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Davison then turned the gun on himself before officers could intervene. He was reported as dead at 6.23pm, according to police.

Parts of the incident happened in front of other members of the public who are said to have been "shocked at what was unfolding before them".

A weapon has been recovered, described by witnesses as a "pump action shotgun".

The killer had a firearms licence, and police will now investigate why it was returned to the gunman just a month before the attack. His shotgun certificate had been revoked after an assault allegation.

Police said on Friday the crime scene stretched to 13 separate sites.

Who are the victims?

Lee Martyn and his daughter Sophie Martyn, were also among the victims

Police released the names of the victims on Friday evening.

The first victim was the gunman’s mother, 51-year-old Maxine Davison, also known as Maxine Chapman.

The three-year-old girl killed was named as Sophie Martyn, who was shot dead alongside her father, 43-year-old Lee Martyn, in Biddick Drive .

The victim killed in the parkland was 59-year-old Stephen Washington.

The woman shot in Henderson Place who died in hospital was named by police as 66-year-old Kate Shepherd.

Police said the woman injured in Biddick Drive was 53 years old and the man was 33 years old. They were both known to each other.

Hundreds placed flowers and candles in North Down Crescent Park in Keyham on Friday evening to remember the victims of the shooting the night before.

Plymouth City Council said a minute’s silence will be held for the victims at 11am on Monday, which will be one of a series of tributes that will be made.

Who was Jake Davison?

The 22-year-old had been an apprentice at Babcock since August last year, according to a spokesperson for the international aerospace, defence and security company.

He had a firearms licence and his gun was taken away last December, following an assault allegation several months before. His licence and gun were returned weeks before Thursday’s shooting spree.

Police are examining the hard drive and social media activity of Davison, who posted on a YouTube channel under the name Professor Waffle.

His social media use suggests an obsession with the “incel“ culture, meaning “involuntary celibate” , a culture which has amassed a following online among some men who feel they are being oppressed by women due to a perceived lack of sexual interest.

He has also posted support for President Trump on his social media.

Additional reporting by Press Association

  1. What happened?

    Police responded to reports of a man shooting people in Keyham in Plymouth just after 6pm.

    Witnesses described seeing a gunman, dressed in black and grey, kicking down the door of a semi-detached house and opening fire.

    It is thought that the gunman fled the house, having injured several people. He then ran along a cul-de-sac and onto a street where he is thought to have shot at strangers passing-by.

    The gunman then allegedly moved into a park and shot at two dog walkers.

    One eyewitness wrote on social media: “There’s [a man] on the rampage in my cul-de-sac with a real gun and he’s already shot two people.

    “They are laying on the ground. One is dead – blood everywhere. I’m shaking like a leaf.”

    Another said: “The guy shot members of his family then went out onto the street”.

    A witness named Sharon, who lives near Biddick drive where the incident took place, told the BBC: “Firstly, there was shouting, followed by gunshots – three, possibly four to begin with.

    “This was when the shooter kicked in the door of a house and randomly started shooting... he ran from the house shooting as he ran and proceeded to shoot at a few people in the Linear Park up from the drive.”

    Robert Pinkerton, 54, said he had “bumped into a bloke with a shotgun” after he heard a “loud bang”.

    Mr Pinkerton saw an injured woman in the doorway of a hairdressers and a man trying to give her medical help.

    A resident of the area, John, said: “I heard the air ambulance helicopters, and two of them landed in the playing field behind us.

    “Then we could hear police cars screeching and we saw armed response officers running up the hill, carrying guns. And loads of ambulances arrived.

    “I went out to check that people were all right and to ask if there was anything we could do, and the Police Community Support Officers told everyone to get back indoors.

    “Then we saw the ambulances take people away. It all seemed to be happening at the man’s family home, I think. People are saying that the man has killed himself. He’s only a young guy, late teens or early 20s.”

    Another witness said: “I was at my mate’s house after going to the gym. We were in his kitchen making some sandwiches and suddenly we heard shouting followed by screaming.

    “We really thought nothing of it as the area can be noisy sometimes. We soon after heard what we thought was a firework going off so then walked towards the front off the house.

    “We then saw the body of the gunman and called 999.”

  2. Who is the gun man?

    The gunman has been named locally as apprentice crane operator Jake Davison.

    The 22-year-old had a fascination for American gun culture and used his social media account to follow pages dedicated to fire-arms, including a campaigning page to end the ban on the sale of machine guns in America.

    He also followed a large number of gun publications on social media, such as Shooting Times magazine, RifleShooter magazine, Handguns magazine and The Truth about guns, among others.

    Davison has posted support for President Trump on his social media.

    In one post on Facebook, Mr Davison re-posted a photo of the former US President with a quote that read: “In America, we do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to watch.”

    He also updated his Facebook cover photo to a picture of a bald eagle – the emblem of the United States – standing in front of the American flag.

    Jake Davison was reportedly employed at the defence and aerospace security company Babcock International.

    It is still not known how he got hold of the gun that he used to attack his family, strangers and ultimately himself in Keyham on Thursday.

    However the mass shooting - the worst in Britain for 10 years - will raise questions about how Davison was able to get the weapon in a country with such strict gun controls.

  3. Who are the victims?

    Devon and Cornwall Police said two females and three males died at the scene, while one female died shortly after in hospital. A local MP has said that one of the victims was a child under the age of ten.

    Local media have reported that two other people were shot and hurt, but that their injuries are not thought to be serious.

    It is also understood that police are contacting families using a specialist liaison officer. Police believe that the gunman was known to some of his victims but that he also attacked strangers in the local area.

    Emergency services have not confirmed the names or ages of any of the victims so far, but local MP Luke Pollard has said that one of the people killed was a child “under ten years old”

  4. What has the reaction been so far?

    Home Secretary Priti Patel said the incident was “shocking”, adding: “My thoughts are with those affected.

    “I have spoken to the chief constable and offered my full support. I urge everyone to remain calm, follow police advice and allow our emergency services to get on with their jobs.”

    Writing on Twitter, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “My thoughts are with the friends and family of those who lost their lives and with all those affected by the tragic incident in Plymouth last night.

    “I thank the emergency services for their response.’’

    Local MP Johnny Mercer called for calm from local residents. He said the “serious and tragic” incident in Plymouth was not “terror related”.

    Mayor of London Sadiq Khan offered his condolences saying: “Deeply saddened by the loss of life in Plymouth this evening. My thoughts and prayers are with all those affected and the emergency service workers responding to this tragic incident.”

    Leader of Plymouth City Council Nick Kelly said nothing in his “living memory” compared with the shooting. He said: “Today our city is mourning and my heart goes out to all those who are directly affected by this incident.”

    The Bishop of Plymouth the Right Reverend Nick McKinnel said the city had been “left with a legacy of grief and trauma, as well as great anxiety” that would “affect people’s lives forever.”

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