Nottingham stabbings triple killer has manslaughter plea accepted

Triple-killer Valdo Calocane will not face a murder trial after pleading guilty to manslaughter, admitting he caused the death of two Nottingham university students and a school caretaker in June last year.

Calocane – a 32-year-old engineering graduate – fatally stabbed Grace O’Malley-Kumar and Barnaby Webber, both 19, and school caretaker Ian Coates, 65, in the early hours of the morning on 13 June 2023.

Prosecutors have accepted Calocane’s pleas of not guilty to murder and guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility due to “serious” mental illness, a judge has been told.

Prosecutor Karim Khalil KC told Nottingham Crown Court on Tuesday that the victims’ families had been consulted before deciding to accept the pleas entered by Calocane.

Calocane, who answered to the name Adam Mendes in court, pleaded guilty at a previous hearing to the manslaughter of Mr Coates, Mr Webber and Ms O’Malley-Kumar.

He also admitted attempting to murder three pedestrians who were hit by a van he had stolen from Mr Coates on the same night.

Calocane pleaded guilty at a previous hearing to the manslaughter of Barnaby Webber (L), Grace O’Malley-Kumar (C) and Ian Coates (R)

Peter Joyce KC, Calocane’s barrister, told a previous hearing the defendant “does not dispute the physical facts of the prosecution’s case” but was suffering from “extreme” mental illness at the time of the incident.

Calocane fatally knifed Ms O’Malley-Kumar and Mr Webber, who were studying medicine and history at the University of Nottingham respectively, on Ilkeston Road at around 4am on 13 June.

Mr Coates was then found dead in Magdala Road around an hour later, having also been stabbed “repeatedly”.

The defendant then used Mr Coates’ van to drive at three pedestrians, Wayne Birkett, Marcin Gawronski and Sharon Miller, in Milton Street and South Sherwood Street.

They all survived the attack.

The prosecution’s decision to accept the pleas entered by Calocane in November means he will not face trial for murder.

Calocane, who appeared in the dock wearing a dark suit and light blue shirt, now faces a sentencing hearing expected to last for around two days.

This story is being updated.

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