Stephen Port - The Grindr Killer

When reading about true crime cases and the word ‘rape’ is reported in the media I think of a female victim. Obviously this isn’t always the case and there have been many men over the years that were the victims of rape. Stephen Port is one perpetrator of these crimes, as well as murdering at least four men, he was convicted of multiple rapes and dubbed The Grindr Killer.

About Stephen Port - The Grindr Killer

Stephen Port grew up in Dagenham, East London, and as a child was described as a loner. As an adult, he lived alone in a flat in Barking and worked as a chef at a Stagecoach bus depot in West Ham. 

On 25 November 2016 he received a life sentence with a whole life order for murdering at least four men and committing multiple rapes. He will not be eligible for parole and is unlikely to be released from prison. 

Malcolm McHaffie, Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor for CPS London, said about the case:

Over a period of three years the defendant committed a series of murders and serious sexual offences against young men. Port manipulated and controlled these men through the chilling and calculated use of the drug GHB, which he administered without their permission ... This was a technically challenging case, complicated by a significant amount of evidence taken from the numerous social media sites Port used.

Stephen Port's Victims

Port met his victims via online gay social networks and apps and made false claims in his bio’s about his background, including that he had graduated from Oxford University and served in the Royal Navy. He used gamma-Hydroxybutyric (GHB), a date rape drug, adding it to drinks given to his victims. He then raped them and murdered four of them in his flat in Barking. The prosecution said “postmortem examinations on the four young men who died revealed that each had died from a drug overdose featuring high levels of GHB” but Port secretly used other drugs on his victims too including Viagra, mephedrone, and methamphetamine (crystal meth).


Anthony Walgate

Stephen Port’s first murder victim was a 23-year-old fashion student. Anthony was originally from Hull but was renting a room in Golders Green while studying. He worked as an escort, on occasion, and was contacted by Port pretending to be a client. Port offered £800 for Anthony’s services. 

Anthony was cautious about the men he met through the online site and told his friends where he was going, showing them a photograph of who he was meeting beforehand. He told a friend about the meeting with Port.

Anthony Walgate was found dead outside the communal entrance to Port’s block of flats in the early hours of 19th June 2014. At the time of the discovery links between Port and Anthony’s death were missed, despite Port having anonymously called emergency services stating that a boy was “collapsed or had had a seizure or was drunk” on the street outside his flat.

Port was convicted of perverting the course of justice in March 2015, because his account of the death to the police varied. He was imprisoned for 8 months, but later released on electronic tag.

Gabriel Kovari, Daniel Whitworth, & Jack Taylor

Between August 2014 and September 2015, Port murdered at least three more men. Gabriel Kovari, a 22-year-old Slovakian who had moved to London; Daniel Whitworth, a 21-year-old chef from Kent; and Jack Taylor, a 25-year-old fork lift truck driver who lived with his parents in Dagenham. 

Around 23rd August 2014, Gabriel Kovari moved into Port’s flat in Barking where he was staying rent free. He told a friend he did not want to have sex with Port, who he described as “kinda different” but said the place was worth it. Within days of moving in, however, Gabriel wanted to move on.

The bodies of these three men were found in the graveyard of the Church of St Margaret of Antioch in Barking. The same woman found two of the bodies, on separate occasions, while she was out walking her dog. Port had planted a fake suicide note alongside the body of Daniel Whitworth that suggested he was responsible for the death of one of the other victims, Gabriel Kovari, and that he had killed himself out of guilt.


Thoughts on the Stephen Port case

During the trial a jury heard how Port had disposed of his victims’ mobile phones, repeatedly lied to police and planted the fake suicide note in the hand of one of his victims, yet the deaths were not linked. Even though the last three victims were found in the same position in the same graveyard, the investigating officers made no link.

Drugs were involved in the deaths and so it was presumed they were self-inflicted or, as the fake suicide note suggested, one victim killed the other. The families of the victims tried to get the police to investigate, but this didn’t happen until later.

All I can say about this case is it’s good that Stephen Port is behind bars, so we can protect those vulnerable young men.

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