Police Monday charged a 22-year-old civil servant with murdering a man during a 15-minute shooting spree in an English coastal town. Fourteen other people were injured in the rampage.
Police said Robert Sartin was charged with killing 41-year-old Kenneth Mackintosh. They said Sartin would appear in magistrates court later Monday.Witnesses said the gunman strolled through the streets of Monkseaton, a fashionable suburb of the Whitley Bay seaside resort in northeast England, firing a double-barreled shotgun at anyone within range.
The victims Sunday included several churchgoers returning home, a cyclist, a couple driving by in a car, a man mowing his lawn, a woman who opened her front door and others who peered out their windows, officials said.
North Tyneside Hospital spokesman Michael Scargill said six of those wounded were hospitalized, three in serious condition.
The first ambulance officers on the scene came under fire.
"He was having a go at any person he met," said Ken Heads, superintendent of the Northumbria ambulance service.
"I have never seen anyone so calm and totally in control - he was like a robot," said a resident, 40-year-old Jane Boyd.
Witnesses said the gunman was dressed all in black, with dark sunglasses and his hair in a pony tail. They said he wore an ammunition belt around his waist, had a hunting knife strapped to one leg, and stalked the streets, pausing only to shoot and reload.
The gunman, who had driven to the suburb just before midday, drove away after the rampage. An unarmed policeman chased him in an unmarked car and arrested him without incident outside a pub.
News reports said the suspect lived with his parents a mile from the shooting scene. A policeman stood guard outside their home Monday.
Press Association, the British news agency, quoted the gunman's brother as saying "All I can say is that he is such a loving and caring lad." The agency did not identify the brother.
The tabloid Sun said the gunman regularly went clay-pigeon shooting with his father and quoted a neighbor identified as Harry Stephenson as saying, "You couldn't hope to meet a more pleasant young man."
Police said Mackintosh was a telephone company employee who was married and had two children. He was returning from church when he was gunned down.