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Father and son shot dead amid 'custody battle’ named, as police arrest three over attacks in two Cambridgeshire villages
30 March 2023, 14:37 | Updated: 30 March 2023, 17:33
Two men who died in shootings at separate addresses in Cambridgeshire were father and son police have confirmed, with the force adding they were investigating a link to an ongoing custody battle.
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The victims have now been named locally as Josh Dunmore, 32, and Gary Dunmore, 57, with formal identification through police yet to take place.
Josh Dunmore, a builder, died in what neighbours have described as a "lovely, quiet little rural village”, with his father, Gary, being shot dead soon after in what has been described as a "targetted" attack.
The two men died at separate addresses - one on Meridian Close, Bluntisham at about 9pm, and the Row in Sutton, near Ely, at about 9.37pm on Wednesday night. The properties are an estimated 6 miles from each other.
Three people have since been arrested on suspicion of murder in what was described as "targeted" attacks, with police confirming a "familial issue" - believed to be a custody battle - was the "primary line of investigation".
Detective chief superintendent Jon Hutchinson, of Cambridgeshire Police, added the two men were "father and son".
Both victims were found dead with gunshot wounds in the villages of Bluntisham and Earith.
The force added they were "working with local residents and family members we quite quickly established that the two victims were related and they were father and son".
"It's been widely reported in the media that this may relate to a custody battle," added DCS Hutchinson.
"I can confirm that is an active line of inquiry for us."
A 27-year-old man and a 33-year-old woman in Cambridge, as well as a 66-year-old man in Worcester, were later arrested
Police have found a shotgun and a white Peugeot 208 that they believe were used by the killer.
Forensics officers in white suits were at the scene in Sutton this morning, as floral tributes were left on the drive and uniformed officers and a marked car beside blue-and-white police tape sealing off the homes.
Neighbour Gordon Murray said he saw police cars "racing down" and armed police shouting on Wednesday evening. The 62-year-old support engineer said officers later asked him if he had CCTV footage, and when he looked back he saw a white car that made two passes, and on the second pass the car stopped and someone opened the boot.
"I saw the police cars racing down here," he said.
"There was a lot of shouting.
"I thought it was an altercation or something. Then I saw the armed police.
"They were shouting something to the homeowners. That was it.
"I stood in the window watching."
Sarah Lown, said she heard three loud bangs on Wednesday evening.
"I didn't know it was gunshots at the time," the 38-year-old designer said.
"It was about 9.15pm; I thought it was something blowing over as I heard a bang.
"There are pallets in our garden that I thought could have fallen over.
"I didn't think anything crazy had happened.
"I heard two more - it was bang, space, bang.
"Whether or not they were each gunshots I don't know; then police were outside the house."
Detective Inspector Mark Butler, from Cambridgeshire police's major crime unit, said: "Tonight we have launched two linked murder investigations following the shootings of two men at separate properties in the county.
"These events will be shocking to local people and there will be understandable concerns within local communities, however, we are treating the attacks as targeted and there is no wider risk to the general public. There will be an increased police presence in the areas concerned today and officers and scenes of crime officers will be at the scenes throughout the day.
"Our thoughts also go out to the family and friends of the victims. Specially trained officers are in touch with them and they are helping our investigation.
"Detectives are now beginning inquiries into how these events unfolded and we are appealing to anyone who was in either area and saw anyone acting suspiciously or a white Peugeot 208.
"Any information, no matter how insignificant it may seem, could be very important to our investigation."