“How do I tell my daughter to trust that the man in uniform is there to keep her safe?”
Sarah Everard’s killer Wayne Coogens caught the 33-year-old in “false arrest” before killing her, a court heard on Wednesday – news that has shocked the public.
Then Couzens, a serving police officer, used his knowledge of the COVID police patrol to kidnap Everard from Clapham, south London, so he didn’t resist, it was said during his two-day trial at the Old Bailey.
Everard is believed to have been violating Covid rules by visiting a friend for dinner during a national lockdown in March.
Couzens reportedly showed his warrant card, then stopped the marketing executive and in less than five minutes drove it to his rented car. He began raping and murdering her in Kent.
Crime reporter Fiona Hamilton of The Times tweeted: “PC Wayne Couzens was seen handcuffing Sarah Everard on a street in Clapham – she was obedient as she used the cover of Covid restrictions to ‘arrest’ her Was.”
The discovery of Everard’s disappearance and subsequent death sparked a global campaign against violence against women.
Coozens lost his job as a police officer when he pleaded guilty to his murder in July.
This latest detail of the ongoing court case has rocked the online community, especially in light of the recent murder of Sabina Nessa in London.
One account tweeted: “My head hurts, what is that [Everard] Will have to go through because he realized what was happening to him, it’s terrible.
“How are we supposed to feel safe? How do I tell my daughter to trust the man in uniform to keep her safe? @Metpolice needs to do some serious work.”
Another said: “Women have every reason to fear a single male officer.”
Others described it as “so, so dark and serious”, while some asked what would happen next in the relationship between police officers and the public.
Harriet Marsden tweeted: “Can we see women handcuffed like that? Can we see police like this? Where do we go from here?”
Some accounts refer back to Couzens’ reputation when he was in the police force.
Feminist and author Caroline Criado Perez tweeted: “I can’t stop thinking about her colleagues who were turning a blind eye to her escalating behavior.”
Journalist Aish Sarkar also tweeted about Couzens’ past, as he was reportedly nicknamed “The Rapist” long before Everard was killed.
Human rights barrister Adam Wagner tweeted earlier this year about the vigil at Reclaim the Streets, which was disrupted by police for violating COVID laws.
He added: “There’s also a bitter irony that when @ReclaimTS attempted to organize a peaceful vigil in memory of Sarah Everard, it was the explicit and repressive COVID laws that police used to stop them from doing so Was.”
Couzens is to be sentenced on Thursday, September 30.