Sarah Everard’s killer kidnapped her using police ID and handcuffs

He later used his police belt to strangle and kill Everard, prosecutor Tom Little told the Old Bailey – the central criminal court of England and Wales. Coozen’s actions were briefly summarized as “deception, kidnapping, rape, strangulation, fire”.

Everard, a 33-year-old marketing executive, went missing after leaving a friend’s house in Clapham, south London, on the evening of March 3. His remains were found a few days later in woodland near Ashford, Kent. more than 50 miles where he was last seen.

Couzens was later arrested from his home in Kent, where Everard’s body was found. Prosecutors said in July that Everard and Coogens were “complete strangers to each other” before abducting her from the roadside.

On Wednesday, prosecutor Little said Couzens lured Everard into a rented car by falsely arresting him for a Covid-19 violation, “handcuffing him as well as showing his warrant card.”

Witnesses to the kidnapping also reported that they saw Couzens’ handcuffs Everard, who appeared obedient and lowered his head. They thought he was an undercover police officer arresting a woman.

Prosecutors said Everard survived for hours after the kidnapping and was later taken to Coogens’ own car. Little told the court, “For doing so and without her trying to run away or run away or make noise, it can be inferred that he would have at least threatened her.”

Prosecutors believe Everard died at 2.30 a.m. on March 4, several hours after he was kidnapped by Coozens.

“The defendant informed the psychiatrist that he strangled Sarah Everard using his belt. Given all the circumstances, this would correspond to his police belt,” Little said.

He believes it happened just before 2.34 a.m., when Coozen went to a petrol station and “bought two bottles of water, an apple juice, a lucid orange and a carrier bag,” Little said.

“There is no CCTV” From petrol station at relevant time due to system upgrade. Although the defendant did not know this and left him alive (even in the boot of the seat) it would be foolishness,” Little said.

Wayne Coozens as seen in a handout photo issued by the Metropolitan Police.

The court heard that in Kent, Coogens had burned Everard’s body in woodland. Little said, “He burned her body after killing Sarah Everard. He then carried her body in a green bag he had bought specifically for that task.”

A few days later, Couzens took his wife and two children on a trip to the same field. “It follows that the defendant … took his family on a family trip to the woods, where he had left Sarah Everard’s body a few days earlier, then returned to burn it and move it and hide it. to come back again,” said Little.

The prosecutor also said that Cousins ​​told his family he was working on the night of March 3, when he kidnapped and later killed Everard.

At Wednesday’s emotional hearing, Everard’s family spoke in court, demanding that the Cousins, who held the hearing with their eyes closed and bowed their heads, watch them while they read their statements.

Sarah’s mother, Susan, said that her daughter “spent her last hours with the worst humanity on this earth. She lost her life because Wayne Coozens wanted to fulfill her perverted desires… He treated my daughter like that.” Done as if she is nothing and dealt with her as if she were bullshit. I am haunted by the horror of it.”

Sarah’s sister Kate Everard told the court: “You used your warrant card to trap my sister in your car. She sat in handcuffs for hours. What could she think she did wrong? What did you do to her? Lied? When did she realize she wouldn’t survive the night? I’m constantly playing on my mind.

Kate said, “You get little bits of information and the thought process starts all over again… My only hope is that she was in a state of shock and was shocked by the disgusting things a monster was doing to her.” didn’t know about it.” .

Cougens is to be sentenced on Thursday. He is expected to receive a mandatory life sentence, but the prosecution is seeking a life sentence, a term granted only in exceptional cases. and does not include possibility of parole.

Speaking to court on Wednesday, Everard’s father, Jeremy, told Cousins ​​that “no punishment you receive will ever compare to the pain and torture you inflicted on us.”

epidemic of violence

Everard’s disappearance sparked a wave of mourning and outrage on social media, with women sharing their experiences of sexual assault, as well as highlighting the epidemic of violence against women and girls in the UK.

An average of one woman is murdered in the UK every three days, according to figures from Femicide Census, an organization that tracks violence against women and girls. The group argues that the government’s new strategy to prevent such violence “shamefully ignores” the victims of feminism.

London’s Metropolitan Police Force has faced criticism for its actions in the days following Everard’s disappearance. The Met has also been accused of failing to investigate several indecent incidents involving Cousins, who was fired from the force in July. After a few days he begged Guilty of kidnapping and raping Everard.
were allegedly women Police officers warned Not to be left out alone as he conducted door-to-door inquiries on the matter, leading some to comment that this approach only fostered a culture of victim blaming.
During a vigil for Everard, police misconduct with protesters was seen in anger.
Vigilance for a march to Everard devolved into violence when a predominantly male group of officers attempted to disperse the crowd, which police Says were violating Kovid-19 rules.
Meanwhile, the police regulator, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), checking whether Police responded appropriately to a report that Coozens exposed himself indecently at a fast food restaurant in south London in February. IOPC is also investigating An alleged failure by Kent Police to investigate another indecent exposure incident involving Couzens from 2015.

Couzens joined the Met in September 2018 and was deployed to a response team covering the Bromley area in south-east London. He then moved to the Parliamentary and Diplomatic Security Command in February 2020, where his “primary role was on uniformed patrol duties of diplomatic premises, primarily a chain of embassies,” a statement from the Met said.

CNN’s Laura Smith-Spark, Kara Fox, Livi Doherty and Shams Elvazar contributed to this report.


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