Valdo Amissao Mendes Calocane, a former student at the University of Nottingham, has been remanded in custody after being charged with the murder of three people. The victims were university students Grace O’Malley-Kumar and Barnaby Webber, both aged 19, and 65-year-old school caretaker Ian Coates. The attacks occurred in the early hours of Tuesday morning and the suspect, 31, appeared in court on Saturday, where he gave his name as Adam Mendes. He was flanked by three security officers and wore a grey T-shirt and jogging bottoms. Calocane, of no fixed address, has also been charged with attempted murder after three people were injured, one critically, when they were hit by a van. He is next due to appear at Nottingham Crown court on Tuesday.
Tributes Paid to Victims
Following the attacks, tributes have been paid to the victims. Grace O’Malley-Kumar, a medical student who played for the England under-18s hockey team, was described by her family as “a truly wonderful young lady” who would be “so dearly missed”. Barnaby Webber’s family described their “complete devastation” at the loss of their son, a history student and keen cricketer, whom they described as a “beautiful, brilliant, bright young man, with everything in life to look forward to”. The sons of Ian Coates said that his death had “rocked everyone’s world” and that he was a “great father”.
Nottinghamshire Police Chief Constable Kate Meynell expressed her condolences and said, “This has been an incredibly sad time for our city and county, and we stand united with our communities as we come to terms with the effects of what has happened.” She also cautioned the public against posting prejudicial information online about the case, which could amount to contempt of court and potentially cause the collapse of a trial.
On Thursday evening, an emotional vigil was held for the victims, during which Barnaby Webber’s mother urged people to “hold no hate” in the wake of the attacks. The first Ashes Test at Birmingham’s Edgbaston ground also paid tribute to the victims, with cricketers wearing black armbands and holding a moment of silence.
The attacks have left the community in shock, and the suspect’s motives are not yet known. The police investigation is ongoing, and the public is urged to come forward with any information that may be relevant to the case.