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Sarah Everard murder was ‘a watershed moment for women’s safety that was wasted’

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he impact of the murder of Sarah Everard was a watershed moment for women’s safety that was wasted by the Government, a campaigner has claimed.

Jamie Klingler from Reclaim These Streets told the PA news agency that misogyny in the Metropolitan Police, Britain’s biggest force, must be rooted out with a full public inquiry.

Ms Everard, 33, was raped and killed by serving Met officer Wayne Couzens as she walked home in south London on March 3 last year.

He had remained an officer despite twice being accused of indecent exposure – once in 2015 while working for the Civil Nuclear Constabulary (CNC), where colleagues nicknamed him “the rapist”, and again in the days before the murder.

Sarah Everard, 33, whose murder by a serving police officer sparked public outrage (Family handout/PA) / PA Media

Ms Klingler said: “It was a watershed moment and it was a watershed moment that they wasted.

“It was a watershed moment that could have changed our lives, that could have made our daughters safer, that could make us safer.

“And there were choices made for it not to be a watershed moment.”

Campaigners including Reclaim These Streets are part of a legal bid to try to force the Government to hold a statutory public inquiry to investigate misogyny in policing.

Currently, Dame Elish Angiolini is leading the first part of a non-statutory inquiry looking at how Couzens was able to work as a police officer for three different forces – Kent police, the CNC and the Met – despite concerns about his behaviour.

Following this, there are plans for a second part that would look at wider issues in policing.

The Met has also commissioned its own review of the culture and standards at the force, including Couzen’s former unit – the Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection Command.

Dame Elish Angiolini is leading an inquiry into how Wayne Couzens was able to remain a police officer despite concerns about his behaviour (Metropolitan Police/PA) / PA Media

Ms Klingler said: “We absolutely continue to demand a statutory inquiry of police treatment of women, not of Wayne Couzens, not of a single person in a single act.

“We need to overall understand the deep levels of misogyny within the Met, and they need to be exposed and accounted for.

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