Only two years ago, in March 2021, Sarah Everard was abducted, raped and murdered by a serving Metropolitan Police Officer. With greater courage than I can ever imagine, Sarah’s mother, Susan Everard, told the Court in her victim impact statement that: “There is no comfort to be had, there is no consoling thought in the way Sarah died. 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 what he did to Sarah. I am outraged that he masqueraded as a policeman in order to get what he wanted.”
The lifespan of this Review has been bookended by that tragedy and another avoidable and abhorrent case when, only two months ago, another serving Met officer, who also exploited his position, was convicted as one of the country’s most prolific sexual offenders. They are connected in another way too. What Mrs Everard could not have known as she made her statement was that another woman heard her words and was so struck by them that she was moved to call 101 and report that other Met officer as having tortured and raped her and left her for dead. It was only as a result of her call that other women came forward and that same officer was eventually prosecuted.
None of this should have happened. Enough was known about both men to have stopped them so much earlier. And there is no comfort I can offer Sarah’s family and the victims of that rapist with my words. Nothing I say can match the daily agony and pain these crimes continue to cause all of those affected.
But I do want to begin this report by remembering Sarah, thinking of all those who have suffered as a result of Met officers’ crimes, and paying tribute to those who have fought for justice on their behalves.
Those crimes, and those betrayals of trust, led to my appointment to review standards and culture in the Met. The previous Commissioner was right to establish this Review, with the Mayor’s support. I am glad to have had the opportunity to lead this work, and am grateful to the new Commissioner for his continued support. I am also deeply grateful to all those who have given us their time and told us their stories, often recounting traumatic and painful experiences.
I have read the Foreword, Summary and Conclusions. They are damning and that is only the first twelve of 346 pages plus annexes.
I have downloaded the whole sordid saga from https://www.met.police.uk/SysSiteAssets/media/downloads/met/about-us/baroness-casey-review/update-march-2023/baroness-casey-review-march-2023.pdf
You can too.