Sheriff's report: Deadly shooting at local gun range deemed self-inflicted

YUMA, Ariz. - As the investigation for the deadly shooting that happened at Adair Range on April 29 continues, new details have emerged.

According to the report, Yuma County Sheriff’s Office (YCSO) deputies arrived at the scene where 24-year-old Madalyn Bryce was found dead with a gunshot wound at the bottom of her head.

Deputies on scene found a weapon, next to Bryce, that had a jammed casing with a second round also jammed under it. 

The reporting party, 78-year-old Donald Babcock, told authorities he met the young woman on Ashley Madison, a dating website. On their website, it is described as a dating service to find discreet relationships of all kinds. 

The two had been talking for a couple of weeks on and off through the site.

Babcock said he had picked her up at an intersection of the Seasons subdivision the previous day in the Foothills area, where she had been staying at. He had received two calls that night, one from Bryce and another from a man who called him using the same phone number as Bryce and told him to, “have her home by midnight”. 

Babcock picked up the 24-year-old woman and took her back to his house where she spent the night. Babcock told deputies they did not have sexual intercourse after deputies suspected a possible sex trafficking situation. 

The following morning, Bryce asked Babcock about protection if someone were to try to break in, and he told her that he had a firearm. Bryce asked Babcock if she could see it and told him she wanted to go shooting. 

He said Bryce “seemed awfully quiet”, did not say anything to him. According to Babcock, she told him she was 20, and she needed a place to stay. He asked her why and she would not say.

At the shooting-range, Babcock and Bryce were taking turns shooting the pistol, a Ruger SR-Series handgun that he owned.

Babcock had left Bryce with the pistol and went to push back the target they were shooting at. He walked out to the target and moved it back further, and as he pounded the stake into the ground, he heard a gunshot. He turned around and she was down. 

Babcock went out to his vehicle where he had left his phone and called 911. 

Medical examiner's investigators arrived at the scene and located other wounds on her body consistent with Bryce holding the pistol as she sustained the gunshot wound to her head. 

YCSO deputies believe that the incident was either an accidental or intentional, but was self-inflicted. 

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