Six guilty of Nottingham police station firebomb riot

Detectives pieced together evidence for the trial.

Six people have been found guilty of involvement in a firebomb attack on a Nottingham police station last summer.

Four Nottingham men and two teenage boys were found guilty of rioting after a trial at the city's Crown Court. A fifth man was acquitted.

One of the men, Lance Francis, 25, was also convicted of arson with intent to endanger life over the firebomb attack on Canning Circus police station.

The men will be sentenced on Friday and the teenagers at a later date.

Francis, of no fixed address, was also found guilty of perverting the course of justice.

Petrol bombs reconstructed

Callum Powell, 20, of Top Valley; Shaundrie Robinson, 22, of Hyson Green and Gregory Coleman, 20, of Broxtowe, were convicted of rioting.

The two boys, aged 16 and 17, cannot be named.

Roxwell Yeboah, 34, from Radford, was cleared of all charges.

Police said evidence for a prosecution came in large part from mobile phone messages sent between the group.

L to R: Shaundrie Robinson, Lance Francis, Gregory Coleman, Callum Powell The group's plans and movements were tracked through mobile phone and internet messages

The shards of bottles thrown at the station were pieced together and matched to those in photographs on the offenders' phones.

PC Alex Cooney, one of the officers inside Canning Circus police station, described the attack.

"There was a gang of 30 to 40 lads all hooded up and we see a petrol bomb coming.

"The petrol bomb landed on the step just outside the door - the steps are on fire and the door frame is on fire as well."

In a statement read out in court, Kaye Challinor said a man launched a lit bottle straight at her as she was sitting on a bus which had stopped at a red light.

"He was looking at me the whole time. His eyes were fixed on me. I was absolutely petrified."

'Complex' case

The offenders were all arrested in and around the area, after officers blocked exit routes.

Det Ch Insp Rob Griffin, who led the investigation, said: "The group planned to meet up armed with weapons, sticks and bottles filled with petrol with every intention of setting the police station alight, regardless of who was inside and the potential danger it put them in.

"The whole attack was filmed by a witness on a mobile phone and several members of the public called the control room, both fearful for their own safety and to report sightings of the group in possession of lit bottles.

"The offenders' complete lack of regard for authority is evident as they walked calmly away from the scene, in some cases approaching people's cars and causing further damage."

The Crown Prosecution Service described the case as "complex and challenging".

Judith Walker, from the CPS, said: "When the defendants were arrested, the evidence against them, for the most part, was their presence at the scene.

"When interviewed most made no comment or claimed they were simply passing through and not a party to any disorder.

"Our task was to piece together the evidence that would prove to a jury that each individual charged had been involved in the criminality which took place that night."

Ten others have already admitted taking part in the violence last August, which followed three days of trouble in London.

The 10 are:

  • Curtis Dejean, 19, of Welstead Avenue, Aspley, admitted riot, arson being reckless as to whether life is endangered, and possession of explosives
  • Reiss Wilson, 21, of Beckhampton Road, Bestwood, admitted riot, perverting the course of justice and arson being reckless as to whether life is endangered
  • Antany Edwards, 23, of Noel Street, Hyson Green, admitted riot
  • Ashton Alexander, 19, of Radford Road, New Basford, admitted riot
  • Harrison McCalla, 21, of Carlswark Gardens, Top Valley, admitted riot
  • Lucas Stapleton, 18, of Dulwich Road, Radford, admitted riot
  • Ricardo Cotteral, 23, of Basford Road, Basford, admitted violent disorder
  • Bobby Muers, 18, of Caunton Avenue, St Ann's, admitted violent disorder
  • Two 16-year-old youths, also from St Ann's, admitted violent disorder

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