Father of Nottingham stabbing victim ‘would do anything to bring him back’

The father of one of victims of triple killer Valdo Calocane has said he misses his son “every minute of every day” and “would do anything to bring him back”.

Barnaby Webber was fatally stabbed as he walked home from a night out in Nottingham in the early hours of June 13 last year.

The 19-year-old history student died alongside his friend and fellow student, Grace O’Malley-Kumar, with Calocane later going on to kill 65-year-old school caretaker Ian Coates and attempt to murder three others.

On Wednesday, relatives of those killed by Calocane attended a Court of Appeal hearing in London where lawyers for the Attorney General’s Office (AGO) argued his sentence was “unduly lenient”.

Speaking outside court afterwards, Mr Webber’s father, David, told the PA news agency: “I miss him every day. Every minute of every day and I would do anything to bring him back. I’d give my own life.

“I hope wherever he is, he’s proud of us and looking down and maybe giving a bit of strength.”

Valdo Calocane court case
Dr Sanjoy Kumar, father of Grace O’Malley-Kumar, James Coates, son of Ian Coates, and Emma and David Webber, parents of Barnaby Webber (Victoria Jones/PA)

“I don’t actually think it was any specific person’s fault. I think it was just multiple agencies that got stuff wrong,” he said.

He said such a probe would help “get to the truth” like the ongoing inquiry over the Post Office Horizon IT system scandal.

Mr Webber said: “It’s taken 20 years for those poor people to get to the truth. Some of them wouldn’t have seen it because they’re gone.

“I don’t want to take that long and we said that to the Prime Minister. We do not want to take that long.

“We’ve accepted you’re doing these rapid reviews. If your rapid reviews come up with the same answer then there’s still a problem.

“You need to get to the nub of the problem and address that problem.”

Calocane admitted three counts of manslaughter by reason of diminished responsibility and three counts of attempted murder, with prosecutors accepting his not-guilty pleas to murder charges based on medical evidence.

The AGO’s lawyers sought to challenge the indefinite hospital order he was given in January, arguing he should instead receive a life sentence as part of a “hybrid” order, meaning he would be treated in hospital before serving the remainder of his sentence in prison.

Three senior judges are expected to issue their decision within about seven days.

Mr Webber said that whatever the outcome of the case “it’s never going to change what I feel”.

He continued: “I feel that Calocane is a murderer. That’s never going to change in my eyes.

“I don’t believe whatever comes out of this he has been given the correct justice, regardless of his diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia.

“I do feel the law needs to change. It needs to be more robust so that people can’t just do horrendous things like this and then say, ‘well, it’s not my fault I wasn’t very well’.

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