Why Sarah Everard's Killer Will Still Get His Police Pension — Despite Being Convicted Of Murder

Photo: Metropolitan Police
Sarah Everard and Wayne Couzens

Wayne Couzens, the police officer who kidnapped, raped, and murdered Sarah Everard, will still receive over a third of his police pension while in prison.

Couzens used his police badge to lure her into his car and later kill her but has not lost all of his police benefits while serving a life sentence. 

On March 3 2021, Couzens stopped Everard while she was walking home after visiting a friend in a south London neighborhood. He used and abused his authority by wrongfully accusing Everard of breaching COVID-19 restrictions.

By deceiving Everard into thinking that she was under arrest, he managed to lure her into his car. Seven days later, her remains were found in the woods which were charred and stuffed in green trash bags nearly 80 miles from London.

Why will Wayne Couzens still get some of his pension?

Home Office guidelines state that no more than 65 percent of a pension can be forfeited as the remain percentage is made up of a person's own contributions.

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Therefore Couzens can keep his remaining 35 percent as taking that away would be an infringement on his human rights — according to a European Convention on Human Rights ruling.

Sarah Everard's murder has made women distrustful of the police. 

Already, women have expressed outrage at being unable to walk home alone and being unable to trust police to protect them

The fact that Couzens is receiving his pension seems especially unjust as he completely abused his position as a police officer.

A former Met Police chief superintendent warned the other day that police with 'questionable backgrounds' are able to get away with these things because of the flawed vetting procedure.

Couzens, not surprisingly, has a very questionable past including being nicknamed 'the rapist' by colleagues and reportedly being 'attracted to brutal sexual pornography' as far back as 2002.

Couzens was also accused of indecent exposure six years ago and even days before Everard's murder, he was accused of exposing himself at a McDonald's restaurant in south London, yet he still wasn't punished for his behavior.

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Unfortunately, Everards isn't the first woman to be killed by British Police. According to Femicide Census, a group that collects data on women killed by men, at least 16 women have been killed by serving or retired police officers over the last 13 years in the UK, proving that tackling gender-based violence isn't a priority to the police.

On September 30th the commissioner of the Metropolitan Police in London told reporters that she was committed to improving safety for women after Sarah Everard's murder called attention to how cases of violence against women are handled.

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Parm Sandhu, a former Met chief superintendent, said Scotland Yard Metropolitan police had fostered a culture where Couzens 'was allowed to flourish'.

According to Ian Blair, head of Scotland Yard, 'an absolutely forensic' investigation was needed in Couzens' murder of Sarah Everard. 

Women should be able to trust the police and be confident they are there to make us safe — not add more risk.

Activists are now arguing the police guidance is tone-deaf, as women are meant to feel as if they have to take responsibility for avoiding crimes against them which shifts the focus away from the real problem of how to identify and stamp out predators in the police department.

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Megan Hatch is a writer at YourTango who covers news & entertainment, love & relationships, and internet culture. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.