A former Uber driver who claimed he was being controlled by the app through his mobile phone has pleaded guilty to murdering six people.

Jason Dalton admitted carrying out the 2016 shooting spree in Kalamazoo County, Michigan, in between picking up fares for the taxi firm.

He pleaded guilty on Monday to six counts of murder and two of attempted murder, on the day a judge had planned to select a jury for his trial at Kalamazoo County Court.

Dalton shot eight people, including six fatally, at three locations in the Kalamazoo area on 20 February 2016.

Image: Dalton claimed he was being controlled by Uber's app through his mobile phone

After his arrest, police quoted him as saying a "devil figure" on Uber was controlling him on the day of the shootings.

According to a police report, Dalton told officers that an icon on the app that was normally red "had changed to black" and a "devil figure" would then "give you an assignment and it would literally take over your whole body".

The report said Dalton told officers he did not shoot when he was pulled over because the app went from black to red and "he felt like he was no longer being guided".

Jason Dalton dragged from court 1:14
Video: May 2016: Dalton dragged from court by security staff

His wife Carole Dalton told police he warned her on the night of the shootings that they "couldn't go back to work anymore and the kids could not go back to school".

When she asked what he meant, Dalton replied that "she would see what he was talking about on the news".

The shootings took place outside an apartment complex, restaurant and at a car park.

He had to be removed from a courtroom during a preliminary hearing in May 2016 after an outburst left a survivor in tears.

Tiana Carruther weeps during outburst by Kalamazoo suspect Jason Dalton
Image: Survivor Tiana Carruthers wept during Dalton's courtroom outburst in 2016

Tiana Carruthers, who was shot multiple times but survived the attack, told the court that she saw Dalton's face "every time" she goes to sleep, adding: "I hurt every single day."

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After the shootings, Uber said Dalton cleared a background check and was approved to be a driver a month before the killings.

Dalton is reportedly due to be sentenced on 5 February.

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