Police Officer Who Killed Sarah Everard Will Never Be Released From Prison

Wayne Couzens was sentenced to a whole-life term, meaning he will likely die in prison.
September 30, 2021, 11:16am
Police Officer Who Killed Sarah Everard Will Never Be Released From Prison
Photo: Family handout

The London police officer who raped and murdered Sarah Everard after kidnapping her in March has been sentenced to a whole-life term without the possibility of parole.

The rare sentence means Couzens, 48, will likely die in prison.

Passing sentence at the Old Bailey, Lord Justice Fulford said: "Sarah Everard was a wholly blameless victim of a grotesquely executed series of offences which cumulated in her death...she was simply walking home mid-evening.”

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He continued: “What [Sarah] would have had to endure would have been as bleak and agonising as it is possible to imagine. Ultimately she was raped and strangled to death."

On Wednesday, the Old Bailey heard how Couzens used his police powers, including his ID and handcuffs, to falsely arrest Everard, who was walking home from a friend's house in Clapham, south London. The 33-year-old’s remains were later found in a woodland in Kent. 

Couzens, a serving Metropolitan police officer at the time, was arrested a week later. In the summer, he pleaded guilty to the rape and murder of Everard. 

Everard’s mother, Susan, shared an emotional victim impact statement with the court on Wednesday, on the first day of a two-day sentencing hearing.

“Sarah is gone and I am broken-hearted. She was my precious little girl, our youngest child. The feeling of loss is so great it is visceral,” she read out in court. “In her last hours she was faced with brutality and terror, alone with someone intent on doing her harm. The thought of it is unbearable. I am haunted by the horror of it.”

“I am repulsed by the thought of Wayne Couzens and what he did to Sarah. I am outraged that he masqueraded as a policeman in order to get what he wanted. Sarah wanted to get married and have children; now all that has gone. He took her life and stole her future and we will never have the joy of sharing that future with her.”

“In the evenings, at the time she was abducted, I let out a silent scream: don’t get in the car, Sarah. Don’t believe him. Run!”

She said that no sentencing could ever be enough compared to the punishment felt by the family, but that, “What I do know is that Sarah will never be forgotten and is remembered with boundless love.”