Jun 8, 2021 - World

British police officer pleads guilty to the rape, kidnapping of Sarah Everard

A memorial for the late Sarah Everard.
Flowers surround the Clapham Common bandstand memorial for Sarah Everard, who was murdered in March. Photo: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

Wayne Couzens, a British police officer, pleaded guilty to the kidnap and rape of Sarah Everard Tuesday, AP reports.

Why it matters: The case has spurred outcry throughout the U.K., with women sharing experiences of being threatened or attacked, and about their everyday fear of violence when walking alone.

Details: Everard, 33, was walking home in South London on March 3 when she went missing. Her body was found a week later after a police investigation was launched, and Couzens was charged with Everard’s kidnapping and murder.

Driving the news: The emotional response her case invoked led to an unauthorized vigil on Clapham Common on March 14, which had been banned because of pandemic-related restrictions.

  • The Metropolitan police led several women attending the memorial away, grabbing them and putting them in handcuffs, an act that was widely criticized, per AP.

What's next: Another hearing will take place on July 9.

Go deeper: U.K. police criticized for response to vigil for slain Sarah Everard

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