The Rettendon incident has been a mystery so far. On 6th December 1995, who would have known that their drug dealers would get shot in a Range Rover? That incident got famous as the Essex incident or the Range Rover Rettendon incident. After that incident, extensive police investigations were held, and many special operations were performed to find the culprit. There are feature films and books that have been devoted to that incident, but the Police were not able to catch the original hands which pushed the trigger that night. It remains a mystery who was involved in the shootings of Patrick Tate, Craig Rolfe, and Tony Tucker, Essex boy, that night.
An operation century investigation was held to find any evidence or clue about the culprit of that three incidents, but it was shut down without finding any more leads on the case. In 1998, two men were convicted for the Essex incident: Michael John Steele, from Great Bentley, Colchester, and Jack Arthur Whomes, from Brockford, Suffolk. According to a police officer informer Darren Nicholls from Braintree, Essex, he gave testimony at the trial against his friends and raised questions about his testimony according to the mobile phone records.
Jack Whomes got released from prison on license after serving his sentence of 23 years instead of 25 years because of his exemplary behavior in jail.
What BBC UK Said About The Range Rover Rettendon Incident
The original sentence that Jack Whomes had to serve was 18 years, but before Christmas, a piece of bad news was broken to this family that now he would be serving 25 years in jail. The home secretary sent the letter to the Whomes family, and in 1995, Whomes was informed of the new sentence signed by the home secretary. He was convicted for the incident of those 3 drug dealers in Essex.
Now he was forced to swallow this bitter pill that his punishment sentence had been increased to 25 years. Another 7 years is misery. He had to stay in jail, away from his parents, four brothers, and sister. It was an unjust moment that he and his co-defendant had to face. Pam Whomes was determined not to let her son go free of this 25-year sentence and clear his name.
Mrs. Whomes mentioned that the Police presented their son with a document stating that he had committed the crime of killing those three drug dealers in the Range Rover. When Jack refused to sign the paper, the home secretary made him serve another 7 years in prison because the Police had no one else to accuse of the incident. Whomes was incarcerated at Cambridgeshire’s Whitemoor top security jail, but the situation was not the same for Road Rage Killer Kenneth Noye.
To meet Whome, his wife Gail, and their kids Jay-Jay, 14, and Lucy, 15, has to take 3 hours from his home in Suffolk to Cambridgeshire’s Whitemoor top security jail. The family tried their best to hide the truth from the kids, but with time, the kids learned the truth and became a part of the whole story. Now the kids are trying their best to release their father.
No parents would ever want their kids to get through such times where they have to see their father in jail for a crime he might not have committed. It was a devastating experience for the Whome family, and nothing can replace the loss that Mrs. Whome and Jack had to bear, and nothing can compensate for it.
This is the whole story that BBC UK told about the Essex incident and the people who suffered the consequences and who might haven’t done anything in the whole situation. Sometimes someone has to take the responsibility to tell the audience that people responsible for their security are doing their best.
The Horrifying Rettendon Incident Story
It does sound horrifying that on 6th December 1995, three drug dealers were shot dead in a Range Rover, and the Police had no clue who did this killing. The Range Rover was parked on a remote farm track near Chelmsford, Essex. The name of those three drug dealers was Tony Tucker, Pat Tate, and Craig Rolfe.
Let’s talk about another death caused by the supply of cannabis and ecstasy by the trio to a teenager named Leah Betts. Police unfold another truth that might have been the reason for the incident because Steele, one of the drug dealers, disapproved of a cannabis shipment from Holland.
Steele Whomes, who was a co-defendant in the incident, according to the prosecution Steele lured the trip to Rettendon’s Workhouse Lane. He shot them with a shotgun and then escaped the location.
Darren Nicholls, who was also caught in the incident with those three drug dealers, was found with a large amount of cannabis and faced a prison sentence. Well, he escaped the prison, was rehoused in different parts of the country, and even got a new identity.
Campaigns that Were Run after the Essex Incident
Mrs. Whomes mentioned in an interview with BBC that “If my son had done something like that, I would tell him, ‘You did what you were supposed to do.’ But he is innocent. There is no evidence.”
In the past year, Jhonny Whomes got arrested because he was carrying a banner before the holidays across the M25 and protesting at the Home Office. He was standing there because he unearthed new evidence that got the case spotlighted again.
He said that there was a where Steele was sitting. According to the Police, the forensics didn’t test the sweet paper and a paper of crisps for DNA.
The Whomes family believes that their family will walk free one day. Whenever all the evidence gets collected again, the Whomes family will claim and apply to the Criminal Cases Review Commission to review the case. According to their solicitor Trevor Linn, it would take three to four years before the case gets represented in front of the Supreme Court.