Ex-bouncer guilty of Nikitta murder

A former nightclub bouncer has been jailed for life after being found guilty of the brutal rape and murder of heavily pregnant teenager Nikitta Grender.

Nikitta Grender was found in her burnt-out flat in Newport, South Wales, last February

Miss Grender, 19, was two weeks away from giving birth when drugged-up Carl Whant called at her flat in Newport, South Wales, at around 5am on February 5 last year.

Tattooed Whant raped the mother-to-be, who was the girlfriend of his closest friend and cousin Ryan Mayes, then slashed her throat and stabbed her in the abdomen.

In an attempt to disguise his crimes, he then set fire to her home, which was ready for the imminent arrival of baby Kelsey May.

But “arrogant” and calculating killer Whant, who left Miss Grender’s parents sickened with his claims that he had consensual sex with their daughter just hours before her death, has now been brought to justice.

Despite throwing away the murder weapon, Whant, 27, of Bettws, near Newport, was caught after DNA evidence was found at the scene and in his car.

He was found guilty of murder, rape, child destruction and arson at Newport Crown Court, and appeared to yawn as the four unanimous guilty verdicts were delivered.

Carl Whant brutally raped and murdered Nikitta Grender just weeks before she was due to give birth

Judge Mr Justice Griffith Williams jailed Whant for a minimum of 35 years, and told him the murder of Miss Grender had “left her family, Ryan Mayes and her friends bereft”.

He added: “The subsequent loss was compounded by the knowledge that her murderer had raped her and then tried to destroy her body. The grief was made all the more deep because you did not scruple to make the wholly false allegation that she had consensual sex with you.”

The judge said Whant had acted with “quite extraordinary hypocrisy” after the murder of the teenager was discovered. He added: “You even took flowers to the Grender household.”

By The Press Association