Beds, Herts & Bucks

Escaped prisoner Anthony Bolden admits kidnapping woman

Anthony Bolden Image copyright Thames Valley Police
Image caption Anthony Bolden stabbed a shopkeeper 18 times as he robbed him in 2005

An escaped prisoner was nearing the end of a life sentence when he kidnapped a young woman while on the run.

Anthony Bolden, 55, was armed with a piece of glass when he forced his way into the woman's car in Sandy, Bedfordshire, then made her drive him to Bedford on 2 July.

There he took her car but was soon caught by police in a short chase where he crashed into a police vehicle.

Bolden admitted kidnapping among other offences at Luton Crown Court.

He will be sentenced on Monday.

Bolden appeared in court for his escape from HMP Spring Hill, near Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire, last May and the crimes he committed during his 33 days on the run.

He pleaded guilty to escape from lawful custody and two charges of having a bladed article. He had previously admitted assault with intent to rob.

While at large he visited his mother's grave in Suffolk and the grave of his wife in Manchester, the court heard.

Sleeping rough

Bolden was sentenced to a term of life imprisonment in 2006 for the attempted murder of a shop keeper in Surbiton, causing grievous bodily harm and robbery.

He was told he would serve at least seven and a half years and the court heard he had spent much of the past 35 years behind bars.

Bolden was moved to HMP Spring Hill, a category D open prison, in October 2018 in preparation for his eventual release but walked out on 30 May last year.

On 23 June he attacked a man at his home in Bedford with a plastic knife before fleeing when the man's wife came out, the court heard.

Prosecutor Martin Lahife said Bolden, who had been sleeping rough in a tent, then forced his way into the young woman's Seat car in a Costcutter car park in Sandy.

After making her drive them both to Bedford he directed her into a car park, well away from other vehicles where he ordered her out of the vehicle.

Bolden then made off but was caught after being spotted driving the wrong way along a one-way road.

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