'Your evil actions caused damage that will never be repaired': Barnaby Webber's father condemns Nottingham triple killer

23 January 2024, 15:50

Barnaby Webber's family spoke out in court ahead of his killer's sentencing
Barnaby Webber's family spoke out in court ahead of his killer's sentencing. Picture: Handout

By Will Taylor

The father of Nottingham stabbing victim Barnaby Webber has called his killer "evil, vicious and selfish" and said his actions "are not reparable in this or any other lifetime".

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Barnaby, 19, was repeatedly hacked to death by Valdo Calcocane just down the road from his student residence in June last year.

He was attacked as friend Grace O'Malley Kumar, also 19, bravely tried to intervene to save him but was killed.

"Your despicable, murderous actions are not reparable in this or any other lifetime. Your evil, vicious, selfish, unforgivable actions have caused damage that will never be repaired," Barnaby's father David said in a victim impact statement.

"I believe in karma, I hope you get all you deserve for the rest of your life."

He said: "Barnaby was a vibrant, loving boy who was growing into a man and starting to live his best life.

"As a father I dreaded him leaving home (to go to university) but I loved my visits to see him; he always had a smile to welcome me.

Read more: Grace's final moments: Family weep as they hear how Nottingham stab victim died heroically trying to protect her friend

Barnaby's father said his killer's actions were evil
Barnaby's father said his killer's actions were evil. Picture: Handout

"Due to your unbelievably savage actions I will never get that again."

His mother Emma told the court: "Barney didn't lose his life on the 13th of June. It was stolen from him in the most vicious, unprovoked, senseless and evil way imaginable.

"There must be appropriate justice served and punishment for the actions of this one monstrous individual."

She added that she had given her son one last kiss on the forehead when she viewed him in a hospital chapel and said: "I thought we would have decades more. I would give anything to hear that voice again."

Prosecutors have accepted Valdo Calocane's pleas of not guilty to murder and guilty to manslaughter.

His plea was accepted on the grounds of diminished responsibility due to mental illness.

Read more: Nottingham attacks victim was a ‘hero’ who died 'fighting to save her friend’, family says as killer’s plea is accepted

Calocane, 32, previously admitted to killing Nottingham University students Barnaby, from Taunton, and Grace, and school caretaker Ian Coates, 65.

The two students had been returning from a night out to celebrate the end of their exams when they were stabbed to death on Ilkeston Road.

Mr Coates was later found fatally stabbed on Mandala Road.

He also admitted attempting to murder three pedestrians, having hit them after taking Mr Coates's van in the early hours of June 13 last year.

Grace’s family had been hoping Calocane would face a murder trial.

Her brother James, 17, said that Grace was a “hero” in her final moments as she “tried to save her friend”.

He told Sky News: “Grace's last moments were in pain and that's something that really hurts me to think about and she was a hero, that was her character.

Grace's brother said she was a 'hero'.
Grace's brother said she was a 'hero'. Picture: Social media

“She tried her best to save her friend. That was how Grace lost her life in the most vulnerable manner. She would never leave a friend, never, and that was very evident from her last moments. She passed fighting.”

"She was just the best sister I could have asked for, she was always there for me as a shoulder to cry on and to quietly listen. She had my best interests at heart all the time.

"Her smile was so contagious, I really miss her. Knowing that I'll never see that again it's something that really hurts me, she was such a joyous person to be around.

"Her laughter, her excitement, she had such an unmatched zest for life. She was honestly so perfect.

Calocane now faces sentencing.
Calocane now faces sentencing. Picture: Nottinghamshire Police

"I think the loss that we've suffered of losing Grace has been a loss to the country.

"She had ambitions of serving as a medic in the armed forces and again serving the country and she was a person who had a priority of contributing to the community during COVID.

"She put herself at risk to benefit others and help the community get in a better position and to take that away from us it's completely unfathomable.

"I will never forgive him. He's taken away my older sister and one day when my parents are gone I'm now going to be left on my own. I won't have my sister. My future children won't have an aunt, they won't have cousins."

Calocane had a history of mental illness. He had previously tried to hand himself into the MI5 headquarters in London as he believed the British security services were controlling him.

The 32-year-old, who appeared in the dock dressed in a dark suit and a light blue shirt, is undergoing a sentencing hearing expected to last for about two days.

Prosecutor Karim Khalil KC told Nottingham Crown Court the families of the victims had been consulted before the prosecution decided to accept the pleas.

He told the court that three psychiatrists had assessed Calocane, concluding that despite suffering paranoid schizophrenia he would have understood the nature of his conduct in attacking three of his victims with a dagger described in court as "a double-edged fighting knife".

Besides his three dead victims, Wayne Birkett suffered a fractured skull and bleed on the brain after being hit by the van as he crossed Milton Street.

He was spotted by police who switched their lights on, then hit and knocked over Sharon Miller and Marcin Gawronski as they walked over a central reservation on Market Street.

All were considered lucky to have survived.

Calocane was finally Tasered five minutes after hitting them, at about 5.35am, when he pulled out a knife as officers boxed him in.

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