Young Female British Lawmaker Shot While Speaking With Constituents

Photo: REX
This story was originally published on Refinery29's U.K. site.

The man accused of killing British politician Jo Cox has been charged with murder, according to CNN. The suspect, Tommy Mair, said at his arraignment that his name was “death to traitors, freedom for Britain.”

Mair is suspected of having ties to right-wing extremism and a motive is being investigated in the case. No plea has yet been entered.

Update: June 16, 5:30 p.m.: Police have confirmed that British Labour MP Jo Cox died after being shot and stabbed in her constituency earlier this afternoon.

"The whole of the Labour Party and Labour family — and indeed the whole country — will be in shock at the horrific murder of Jo Cox today," Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn said in a statement. "Jo Cox had a lifelong record of public service and a deep commitment to humanity. She worked both for Oxfam and the anti-slavery charity the Freedom Fund, before she was elected last year as MP for Batley and Spen — where she was born and grew up.

"Jo was dedicated to getting us to live up to our promises to support the developing world and strengthen human rights — and she brought those values and principles with her when she became an MP. Jo died doing her public duty at the heart of our democracy, listening to and representing the people she was elected to serve. It is a profoundly important cause for us all," Corbyn said.
This story was originally published on June 16, 2016, at 4 p.m. GMT.

A 41-year-old female Labour MP for Batley and Spen in West Yorkshire, Jo Cox, has been stabbed and shot by an attacker in her constituency, according to the BBC. West Yorkshire police have confirmed the attack and have arrested a 52-year-old man. Eyewitnesses said that Cox was left bleeding on the floor before being rushed to Leeds General Infirmary hospital.

Cox, who is a mother of two, was holding her weekly surgery in Birstall, which functions as an opportunity for constituents to come and discuss concerns and grievances with their MP face-to-face. Cox has held the seat since 2015, and grew up in the nearby town, Batley. Before she ran for Parliament, Cox graduated from Cambridge in 1995, later becoming a head of policy for the charity Oxfam and working as an adviser to Sarah Brown (the wife of former Prime Minister Gordon Brown). Her involvement in the Labour Party has been dedicated, and both Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn and Prime Minister David Cameron have tweeted messages of support to Cox's family.
Eyewitnesses told the BBC of the horrific events they witnessed. Clarke Rothwell, who runs a nearby café, described what he saw: "A man stood there in his 50s with a white baseball cap on and a jacket with a gun, an old-fashioned-looking gun in his hand."

"He shot this lady once and then he shot her again, he fell to the floor, leant over, shot her once more in the face area. Somebody tried to grab him, wrestling with him, and then he wielded a knife, like a hunting knife, just started lunging at her with a knife half a dozen times. People were screaming and running from the area," he added.

Police are investigating reports that the suspect shouted "Britain First," potentially referring to the far-right political party, before the attack. She is currently in critical condition after being airlifted to the hospital.


More from Global News