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Nottinghamshire PCC adds voice to calls for public inquiry into Valdo Calocane case

The Police and Crime Commissioner for Nottinghamshire added her voice to the calls for a public inquiry into the Valdo Calocane case.

PCC Caroline Henry met with the families of Grace O’Malley-Kumar, Barnaby Webber and Ian Coates this afternoon to hear of their campaign to understand the circumstances surrounding the killings.

After a positive meeting PCC Henry said that, while she welcomed the various investigations and reviews already on going, they would be focused on how each agency acted rather than interacted.

In a statement released after the meeting she said: “I want to thank the families of Grace O’Malley-Kumar, Barnaby Webber and Ian Coates for meeting me today.

“I have been humbled by the bravery and determination they have shown, in the face of such devastating personal tragedy, to ensure that positive change comes from the terrible events that unfolded in the early hours of 13 June 2023.

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“It is almost impossible to process the horror they experienced. For them to cope with the devastation whilst showing such commitment and determination to the cause of change is truly remarkable.

“In that desire for change they have my full support. We must all stand together in our determination and commitment to ensure everything is done to prevent a similar tragedy.

“Our focus should be, and is, on ensuring the legacy of the victims is lasting and positive change.

“While I welcome the multitude of enquiries and investigations being launched by the agencies involved in this case they will likely focus on how each agency acted and not necessarily how they interacted.

“I have listened to the families and want to add my voice to their calls for a public inquiry.

“I have already commissioned a wide-ranging review of Nottinghamshire Police by the College of Policing and have asked the bereaved families and surviving victims to play a key role in setting the parameters of that process.

“This review, in conjunction with IOPC investigations, will constitute an exhaustive examination of police process, actions and policy.

“It would be wrong to pre-judge the findings of that review, or any other of the many enquiries and investigations going on into this case.

“Whatever happens I have given the family my absolute unwavering commitment to ensuring that any and all recommendations emerging from these processes are actioned quickly and effectively.”

OPEN LETTER 

As Nottinghamshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner I take my role as the voice of the people on policing and crime issues incredibly seriously.

It is my job to listen to communities and ensure that their opinions are heard loud and clear by those in power.

 I recently met the families of Grace O’Malley-Kumar, Barnaby Webber and Ian Coates – victims of killer Valdo Calocane.

I have also spent time talking with Wayne Birkett, who was lucky to survive, but has been left physically and mentally scarred by Calocane.

I know the whole community is united with them in grief and horror at the events that unfolded in the early hours of 13 June 2023.

 In 90 minutes three people had their lives cruelly stolen and three others devastated by life changing injuries in an act of brutality most people can barely fathom.

 We must now all stand together in our determination and commitment to ensure everything is done to prevent something like this ever happening again.

Our focus should be, and is, on ensuring the legacy of the victims is lasting and positive change.

That is why I wholeheartedly support calls for a public inquiry into the events leading up to, and the aftermath of, this shocking crime and others where mental health has been established as a critical factor.

I welcome the multitude of enquiries, investigations and reviews being launched by all the agencies that have been involved in this case. Undoubtedly this will highlight mistakes, process weaknesses and circumstances which I hope will provide critical learning.

Yet we also recognise that these individual enquiries will likely focus on how each agency acted and not necessarily how they interacted. They are also squarely focused on a specific case.

If we are to find answers to the real change necessary to protect our communities from a repeat incident then a whole system review is needed.

The UK charity Hundred Families reports that on average 120 families a year are bereaved as a result of mental health homicides in the UK each year – around 20% of the total number of unlawful killings in the country each year.

Unfortunately the case in Nottingham appears not to be an isolated one.

 

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