Harrowing 999 call from desperate passer-by after Nottingham triple killer Valdo Calocane stabbed students to death

25 January 2024, 13:00 | Updated: 25 January 2024, 14:03

Valdo Calocane killed three people in Nottingham last year
Valdo Calocane killed three people in Nottingham last year. Picture: Nottinghamshire Police

By Kit Heren

This is the desperate 999 call from a passer-by who witnessed Nottingham triple killer Valdo Calocane slaughter students Grace O'Malley-Kumar and Barnaby Webber.

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Paranoid schizophrenic Calocane, 32, killed Barnaby and Grace as they came home from a night out on June 13 last year.

After he was sentenced to be detained in a secure hospital on Thursday, the audio of the passer-by's tragic call to emergency services was released.

"Oh no," the man can be heard saying, with the operator asking him what his emergency is.

"There's been a stabbing on Ilkeston Road, there's someone lying on the street - I think they're dead," the caller says.

"Oh, that was awful," he adds. The operator asks him for more specific directions, to which the unnamed man replies: "Near the crossroads."

Read more: Nottingham triple killer Valdo Calocane detained in high-security hospital 'for life' after knife and van rampage

Read more: Chilling CCTV shows final moments of student best friends before they were knifed to death by Nottingham triple killer

Nottinghamshire police break down Valdo Calocane's attack

Calocane also fatally stabbed Ian Coates, a school caretaker, later in the morning of June 13 before driving his victim's van into three people in an attempt to kill them.

But he only admitted manslaughter by reason of diminished responsibility, as well as three counts of attempted murder for the van victims. Prosecutors accepted the plea.

Barnaby Webber was stabbed to death by Calocane
Barnaby Webber was stabbed to death by Calocane. Picture: Handout

It is unclear when Calocane, who was sent to Ashworth secure hospital, will ever be safe to the public.

The judge, Mr Justice Turner, told him: "Your sickening crimes both shocked the nation and wrecked the lives of your surviving victims and the families of them all."

He said Calocane remains "dangerous", and still believes that voices in his head he believed control him are real. He added that putting him in jail would risk him rejecting medication.

Barnaby, 19, was attacked by Calocane just down the road from his student residence.

Grace was killed as she bravely tried to save Barnaby
Grace was killed as she bravely tried to save Barnaby. Picture: Handout

During Calocane's sentencing hearing, Barnaby's father David told him: "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."

He added: "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.

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

Grace, a medicine student, tried to intervene and push him away and has since been called a hero for trying to save her pal. The judge said she would have been an exemplary practitioner.

She tried to stop Calocane, who wielded a double edged fighting knife. She fell next to Barnaby and Calocane went back to attack him before he calmly walked off.

Calocane has been given a hospital order
Calocane has been given a hospital order. Picture: Police

The attack was caught on a taxi's dashcam.

"That footage shows that the devastating violence of the attacks was mirrored only by the deliberate and merciless way the defendant acted," prosecutor Karim Khalil said previously.

He was then seeing trying to get into a homeless hostel to attack those inside but he was fought off by an occupant.

He then attacked Mr Coates, stabbing him to death, then took his van to search for more victims.

Calocane swerved to hit Wayne Birkett, a random pedestrian who suffered life-changing injuries, including brain damage that leaves even basic tasks difficult. His personality has also changed, having lost interest in his social life and football.

He lives in constant pain and believes it would have been better for all if he had died.

The killer then drove at two other pedestrians, Marcin Gawronski and Sharon Miller, who were "extremely lucky to survive". Ms Miller is still worried about going out.

After being boxed in by the police, he pulled out his knife and only dropped it when officers Tasered him.

The judge said Calocane had sentenced the victims families to a lifetime of "grief and pain".

He said the killer was "clearly an intelligent man" who studied mechanical engineering at Nottingham University but he later developed mental health issues, feeling his flatmates and intelligence services were spying on him.

He heard voices he believed were controlling him and he went to MI5 in the belief they could stop them.

He stopped taking his medication, believing the voices were real, and tried to break other flats. He attacked an officer when he was set to undergo a mental health assessment.

One psychiatrist, who assessed Calocane ahead of the sentencing, said he was "divorced from reality" while another said he was not "insane" at the time of the attacks but his rational judgement and self control was heavily affected.

Calocane also attacked employees during a warehouse job during a time when he seemed to improve, for which he was sacked.

He held no relevant political, religious or ideological convictions.

He still believes the voices are real and does not think he is mentally ill, the judge said.

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