Police officers under investigation over alleged assaults by Nottingham killer

Three Leicestershire Police officers are under investigation over how they dealt with alleged assaults by Valdo Calocane the month before he killed three people in Nottingham.

Watchdog the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) said two constables and a sergeant have been told they are being investigated over how inquiries were progressed.

It is claimed that Calocane assaulted two colleagues at an industrial estate in Kegworth, Leicester, in May last year.

The following month, he went on to kill students Barnaby Webber and Grace O’Malley-Kumar, both 19, along with caretaker Ian Coates, 65, in a knife rampage in Nottingham.

The IOPC said it is “looking at Leicestershire Police’s contact with Mr Calocane prior to the killings last June and in particular the actions and decisions taken by officers during an investigation into alleged assaults by him the preceding month (May 2023) at Kegworth, Leicester.”

Ian Coates, Barnaby Webber and Grace O’Malley-Kumar
(left to right) Ian Coates, Barnaby Webber and Grace O’Malley-Kumar were all killed by Calocane, who has paranoid schizophrenia, in Nottingham in June last year (Nottinghamshire Police/PA)

Leicestershire Police referred itself to the watchdog in February this year.

“We have advised three Leicestershire Police officers, two police constables and a sergeant, that they are under investigation for potential misconduct over how enquiries were progressed,” the IOPC said.

“Decisions on whether any officers have a disciplinary case to answer will be taken on completion of the investigation.”

Separately, the watchdog is also examining a number of complaints made by the Nottingham victims’ families.

Investigators are looking at what information was available to police about Calocane before the killings on June 13 2023.

They are also examining:

– Nottinghamshire Police’s decisions and actions relating to Calocane between September 2021 and the events of June 13 last year

– how the force informed the families of the death of their loved ones, and the support they put in place for them, including how information from the ongoing investigation was communicated to them

– whether senior officers followed relevant policies and procedures in their oversight of officers investigating the events of June 13 and subsequent events, including communications with the family and public over the handling of inappropriate WhatsApp messaging and potential sharing of information about the case.

The IOPC said all Nottinghamshire Police officers are currently being treated as witnesses, meaning there is no indication of any wrongdoing at this stage.

Calocane was sentenced to an indefinite hospital order for three counts of manslaughter and another three of attempted murder in January.

An appeal by the Attorney General arguing that the sentence was unduly lenient was rejected.