Man jailed after prison escape crime spree, including kidnap and assault

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Anthony Bolden

A man who escaped from prison before carrying out a kidnap and common assault will now spend eight years and three months behind bars.

Anthony Bolden, 55, of no fixed abode, was serving a life sentence when he absconded from custody and went on a crime spree in Bedfordshire last summer.

He was sentenced at Luton Crown Court today on Monday (20 January) after being found guilty of escape from lawful custody, possession of a pointed article, common assault and kidnapping.

Bolden was serving a life sentence after he was convicted of attempted murder and grievous bodily with intent back in July 2006.

He had been moved to an open prison where he had to be checked five times a day, but was last accounted for on 31 May.

On 23 June, Bolden entered the garden of a property in Ampthill Road, Bedford, and asked if there was a room to rent. When the occupants said no, Bolden became aggressive and attacked a man in front of his family.

Just over a week later on July 2, Bolden threatened a woman parked outside a shop in Sandy with a piece of glass, forcing her to drive.

He asked the victim to pull into a car park in Bedford before telling her to get out of the vehicle, leave the keys and report her car as stolen.

Bolden then made off in the vehicle.



Police spotted the car being driven dangerously as it entered a one-way system the wrong way. When Bolden failed to stop for police, he crashed the vehicle into a police car and was arrested.

In a victim impact statement read in court, the woman said, “Each time I go out I have to look over my back with the belief that I am going to be attacked… I am constantly having nightmares, fearing the worst that I could have been killed in this attack.

“The incident that day was so long and was just not coming to an end.”

Detective Constable Aroop Nandre, who led the investigation, said, “Bolden’s dangerous and reckless behaviour has caused untold distress and angst to a number of innocent victims.

“The victim of the kidnapping has been left scared and distressed and this incident has affected her everyday life, as she now fears leaving her home.

“Bolden knew full well how frightening his behaviour was, yet he continued with his actions. When he didn’t get what he wanted he became aggressive, and it is fortunate that nobody was seriously injured.

“Bolden is a dangerous man who deserves to spend a significant time behind bars. He was already serving a life sentence after being jailed in 2006 and recently was trusted to stay in a lower risk prison; he broke that trust by absconding and carrying out this terrifying crime wave.”

Bolden received six years and five months for kidnapping and 22 months for escaping from lawful custody, to run consecutively.

He received 21 months for having a bladed article, 10 months for having an article with a blade and 18 weeks for common assault to run concurrently.