Three family members killed in targeted crossbow attack

LONDON – In a shocking incident north of London, three women from the same family were killed, allegedly by a man using a crossbow. The suspect, 26-year-old Kyle Clifford, was apprehended Wednesday at a cemetery in Enfield after a large-scale police manhunt. He was later hospitalized due to injuries sustained prior to his arrest. Authorities have suggested that the gruesome attack was targeted, and the suspect was acquainted with the victims.

The tragedy unfolded in the small town of Bushey, where police discovered the victims with severe injuries at around 7 p.m. local time on Tuesday. Despite immediate medical attention, all three women, aged 25, 28, and 61, succumbed to their injuries at the scene. The victims of the incident were Carol Hunt and her two daughters, and all were relatives of BBC horse racing commentator John Hunt.

Chief Superintendent Jon Simpson elaborated that the investigation demanded “extensive police resources,” including armed units, across Hertfordshire and neighboring North London due to the potential ongoing threat posed by Clifford, who was believed to be armed with a crossbow at the time.

In Britain, where firearm-related crimes are rare due to stringent gun laws, such violent offenses, particularly involving crossbows, are exceedingly unusual. Police statistics reveal fewer than ten crossbow killings in the country from 2011 to 2021. Current regulations allow those over 18 to buy or own a crossbow, but public possession without a valid reason can lead to incarceration.

This week’s violence has reignited discussions about national weapons laws, especially considering the government’s consideration in February to tighten controls on crossbows. This came after a 2021 incident where an individual armed with a crossbow was arrested near Windsor Castle, claiming he intended to assassinate Queen Elizabeth II.

Interior Minister Yvette Cooper expressed that she was closely monitoring the situation, emphasizing the profound shock over the brutal killings.