UPDATE (March 12): The Metropolitan Police have now confirmed that the human remains recently discovered in woodland near Ashford, Kent, belong to 33-year-old marketing executive Sarah Everard.
Speaking outside New Scotland Yard, Assistant Commissioner Nick Ephgrave confirmed the body was Ms Everard’s and that her family had been informed: “As you know, on Wednesday evening, detectives investigating the disappearance of Sarah Everard discovered a body secreted in woodland in Kent. The body has now been recovered and formal identification procedure has now been undertaken. Specialist officers remain in constant contact with Sarah’s family, and will continue to support them throughout the investigation and beyond.”
He added: “The investigation continues at a pace and we have hundreds of officers working round the clock to establish the full circumstances of Sarah’s disappearance, and her murder.”
A diplomatic protection officer based at the Palace of Westminster, PC Wayne Couzens, 48, was being held on suspicion of Ms Everard’s kidnap and murder, but was yesterday (March 11) rushed to hospital after being discovered slumped in his cell with head injuries. The Met Police since confirmed the news, saying: “The suspect was taken to a hospital for treatment to a head injury sustained while in custody. He has since been discharged and returned to custody. We are not prepared to discuss further.”
Couzens’ wife, Elena Couzens, 39, was also arrested at their home in Kent on suspicion of assisting an offender.
The 33-year-old, a marketing exec, was last seen on Wednesday 3rd March on a doorbell camera while walking through Clapham to her home in Brixton, South London, having been with a friend in Clapham.
According to the Met Police, a serving officer has been arrested on suspicion of Everard’s murder. They also said that have received more than 120 calls from the public and have visited 750 homes in the area as part of the investigation.
The officer, who has not been named but is said to be in his 40s, was originally arrested on suspicion of kidnap on Tuesday at an address in Kent, but has since been arrested as a murder suspect and also for a separate allegation of indecent exposure. Neighbours of the Met officer have reported seeing a car being removed and claim they’ve seen police officers digging up the garden.
Speaking about the officer in question, the Met said in a statement: “His primary role was uniformed patrol duties of diplomatic premises.”
This post will be updated as more comes in.