Man kidnapped students then threatened to chop them and send remains to parents

A man kidnapped students at knifepoint then told them he would chop them up and send their sliced remains to their parents.

Jack Crocker, 22, broke into his victims’ house in the dead of night before forcing them into their car.

He then drove them around while making a series of threats, reports Wales Online.

Crocker told police he had drunk gin that night and could not remember what he had done.

Swansea Crown Court heard at around 2am on November 18 last year a university student was in his room in a shared house in the Port Tennant area of the city playing a computer game when he heard a noise from downstairs.

Ian Wright, prosecuting, said the youngster assumed it was one of his housemates returning home and went to see him.

But instead of finding a friend he was confronted by an intruder in the kitchen – 22-year-old Crocker.

The burglar punched the student in the face a number of times and began demanding the keys to a car parked outside.

Crocker told his victim he would cut him up into little pieces and send the pieces to his parents.

The court heard at this stage another housemate entered the kitchen and the burglar then produced a Stanley-type knife from his jacket and began waving it around.

Mr Wright said Crocker issued a series of threats to the young men about stabbing and cutting them and told them he “owned the street”.

The defendant then forced the pair into the car one of them owned and drove them erratically and at speed around Port Tennant.

As he drove he told them he had a gun and would shoot them and threatened to track them down to their parents’ properties and firebomb them.

The court heard at one stage Crocker got stuck in one of the streets and as he struggled to turn the car around he constantly sounded the horn. The noise attracted the attention of a passerby who went to inquire if he could help.

Crocker told his passengers to remain silent and he told the pedestrian he was okay. As the man walked away the driver turned to his passengers and said: “To show this is real shall we go and kill him?”

After getting going again Crocker continued to drive his hostages around Port Tennant before colliding with a parked car.

He then tried to wipe his fingerprints off the steering wheel with a sock he was carrying before ordering the students out of the vehicle.

Then trio set off on foot to return to the victims’ shared house and as they took a shortcut down an alley the students took their chance to flee.

Crocker initially gave chase then abandoned the pursuit. The prosecutor said the students flagged down a passing car and asked for help before contacting the police.

The victims were subsequently able to identify their kidnapper – who was a neighbour – during an ID process and Crocker was arrested.

Mr Wright said the defendant’s reply to being cautioned was: “When I drink gin I don’t know what I’m doing.”

In victim impact statements from the students both said they had felt unable to return to the shared address after the attack because they did not feel safe and had gone to live with their parents – though both are continuing with their studies.

One described how Crocker had held the blade near his face and how the defendant’s “unpredictable” behaviour had frightened him.

Crocker, of Robert Owen Gardens, Port Tennant, Swansea, admitted aggravated burglary, two counts of kidnapping, possession of a bladed article, aggravated vehicle taking, and driving while disqualified.

The court heard he had a string of previous convictions and was out of prison on licence following his most recent conviction at the time he kidnapped the students.

Andrew Evans, for Crocker, said it was clear from the defendant was “immature in the extreme” and was fixated with cars.

He said Crocker had a two-year-old daughter and would now miss many milestones in her young life because of the prison sentence he was inevitably facing.

Judge Keith Thomas told Crocker he had subjected his victims to a “terrifying ordeal” which had caused them long-term psychological harm and that an extended sentence was appropriate to protect the public from future risk.

Crocker was sentenced to a 13-year extended sentence comprising eight years in custody and five years on licence.

He must serve at least two-thirds of the custodial element of the sentence before being considered for parole.

Crocker was also disqualified from driving for 100 months.

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