The son of Ian Coates, one of the three victims of a stabbing incident in Nottingham, has called his father’s murderer the “most evil person on this planet”. Ian Coates, a school caretaker, was killed alongside students Barnaby Webber and Grace O’Malley-Kumar, both 19 years old, on June 13.
His son, James Coates, described the killer, Valdo Calocane, as cold, calculated and brutal. Calocane has pleaded guilty to three counts of manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility. Ian Coates was attacked while driving his van and died from wounds to his abdomen and chest.
Calocane also admitted to three counts of attempted murder, having driven the stolen van towards three people after the murders. Ian Coates was an employee at Huntingdon Academy in Nottingham and was due to retire in four months.
In an exclusive interview with BBC, James Coates expressed his disdain for his father’s murderer. He also stated that the events of that day would have been unprecedented in Nottingham or the country had Calocane not been apprehended.
His brother Lee called Calocane a coward for targeting vulnerable individuals. Nottinghamshire Police’s Assistant Chief Constable Rob Griffin admitted that more could have been done to arrest Calocane before the incident.
Prosecutors accepted Calocane’s plea of manslaughter due to diminished responsibility after he denied murder charges in November. The court heard that Calocane was suffering from a “serious” mental illness. Despite being diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, three psychiatrists concluded that he would have understood his actions when he attacked his victims.
The families of the victims were consulted before accepting the plea, but they expressed dissatisfaction with the case’s conclusion. They believe that the evidence points to a premeditated murder rather than manslaughter.
Ian Coates’s sister, Susan Coates, said she couldn’t forgive Calocane for his actions. She remembered her brother as a kind man who left behind a legacy of love and kindness. The judge is set to deliver his sentence on Thursday.