Scotland Yard is facing a probe by the police watchdog after Wayne Couzens, a serving cop in the Met, was charged with the kidnap and murder of 33-year-old Sarah Everard.
The marketing manager "vanished into thin air" while walking home from Clapham to Brixton in South London on the evening of March 3.
Her death sent shockwaves through the country when firearms officer Wayne Couzens, 48, who protected politicians and patrolled embassies when on duty, was arrested in connection with Sarah's death.
Since Couzens was arrested, it has emerged he was accused of indecent exposure at a fast food takeaway in South London on February 28 – just four days before Sarah went missing.
While in custody, dad-of-two Couzens has been rushed to hospital twice with head injuries sustained in his cell. The first trip to St George's Hospital in Tooting saw him admitted to intensive care.
The handling of the case which has seen one of their own charged has raised big questions for Scotland Yard as it has made five referrals to the Independent Office for Police Conduct:
1) Alleged murder of Sarah Everard by a serving Met officer
The man suspected of murdering Sarah Everard is serving cop Wayne Couzens.
After a week-long search for missing Sarah, human remains were found at an abandoned paintball centre in Ashford, Kent, 50 miles from where she disappeared.
Forensics teams have been combing through Couzens' family home in Deal, Kent, and woodland nearby.
2) Wayne Couzens accused of indecent exposure
Couzens was accused of indecent exposure at fast food takeaway in South London on February 28.
3) Scotland Yard's handling of indecent exposure allegation
The indecent exposure allegation against Couzens came just four days before Sarah Everard went missing.
It's believed to have been reported by staff members in the takeaway and caught on CCTV
Now questions are being asked about how Met officers handled the report.
After the allegation was made, Couzens kept working. He was arrested six days after Sarah Everard was allegedly kidnapped.
If Couzens had been arrested, his firearm licence would have been revoked and he would have been taken off-duty.
The Daily Mail has reported the accusation had not reached 'command level'. Couzens' colleagues most likely wouldn't have known about the allegationa at all.
4) Wayne Couzens' head injury
After Couzens' arrest, he was found unconscious with a head injury in his custody cell – which was monitored by CCTV – in Wandsworth.
He was taken to St George's Hospital in Tooting for treatment before being returned to his cell.
There is no suggestion anyone else was involved in the incident.
5) How cops handled original reports of Sarah Everard's disappearance
The final question for Scotland Yard is about how the force responded to reports Sarah had vanished on March 3 at about 9.30pm.
A Met Police statement said it was offering "every assistance to the IOPC."
Source: Read Full Article