SPALDING SHOOTINGS: Coroner wants evidence on Lance Hart’s state of mind

Shooting victims: Charlotte and Claire Hart.
Shooting victims: Charlotte and Claire Hart.
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A coroner wants evidence on the state of mind of a father who shot his wife and daughter – before turning the gun on himself.

Claire Hart (48) and Charlotte Hart (19) died in a car park at Spalding’s Castle Sports Complex after husband and father Lance Hart (57) opened fire with a single-barrelled shotgun for which he didn’t hold a licence.

Lance Hart, who shot his wife and daughter.

Lance Hart, who shot his wife and daughter.

South Lincolnshire’s senior coroner Paul Cooper opened an inquest on all three members of the Moulton family in Boston today (Wednesday) following the shooting on Tuesday, July 19.

Mr Cooper revealed he has asked the investigation to focus on:

• how the shotgun was obtained

• medical evidence to ascertain Lance’s state of mind

• evidence on the marital relationship between Claire and Lance

The inquest was adjourned for a full hearing on October 19.

The senior investigating officer, Det Insp Helen Evans from Lincolnshire Police, described to the inquest how police received several reports of a shooting at 9am on Tuesday of last week.

She said police and East Midlands Ambulance Service personnel went to the leisure centre car park, where they found one male deceased, one female deceased and one female “requiring urgent medical attention”, but that female also died at the scene.

It was not specified whether it was Claire or Charlotte who was still alive when assistance arrived.

Det Insp Evans said witnesses reported seeing a male with a gun who shot the two females in turn and then turned the weapon on himself, firing it and killing himself immediately.

She said Claire was identified from a photograph by one of her police colleagues, and her identity will be further proven by DNA testing. Charlotte was identified by her brother and Lance was identified by fingerprint records.

Mr Cooper said Home Office Pathologist Dr Michael Biggs, of Leicester Hospital, had been commissioned to carry out full post

mortems.

But he has confirmed Claire was wounded in the chest and abdomen, Charlotte had wounds to the upper abdomen and Lance had wounds to his head.

Mr Cooper said Lance’s wounds were the only ones that were self-inflicted.

There were no members of family present at the inquest opening.

Charlotte had two brothers, Luke and Ryan.

The triple shooting sent shockwaves through Spalding, South Holland and the village where the Harts lived in a house in Hatt Close, and made national TV and press news.