Family of BLM activist Sasha Johnson share harrowing image as they vow to get justice

28 February 2022, 21:43 | Updated: 28 February 2022, 21:51

Sasha Johnson's family have issued a public appeal for information
Sasha Johnson's family have issued a public appeal for information. Picture: Met Police

By Megan Hinton

The family of Sasha Johnson, who was seriously wounded in a shooting last year, have spoken about the impact the attack has had on their lives as they launch a public appeal for information.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

The mother and sister of the Black Lives Matter activist are calling on member of the public to come forward with information as police face a "wall of silence" from witnesses of the attack.

Ms Johnson, a mother-of-two, was shot in the head during a silent disco in the garden of a house in Peckham, south London, just before 3am on May 23 last year.

She suffered "catastrophic" and permanent injuries and more than nine months on, she remains in hospital.

Four men were charged with conspiracy to murder following an investigation into the shooting.

But on Tuesday, 22 February, the Crown Prosecution Service confirmed it was unable to offer any evidence against them.

The four men were released, but the investigation continues.

In a public plea today the family released a harrowing image of Sasha in her hospital bed as they issue a renewed appeal for anyone with information to come forward.

Read more: Case of four men charged over shooting BLM activist Sasha Johnson collapses

Read more: Huge explosions rock Kyiv hours after Putin resorts to banned 'cluster bombs'

Sasha Johnson remains in hospital more than nine months after the attack with permanent injuries.
Sasha Johnson remains in hospital more than nine months after the attack with permanent injuries. Picture: Met Police

The image shows the extent of her injuries and of the "devastating impact this shooting has had on a young woman who had the whole of her life ahead of her".

Sasha's sister, Shakira Williams, said: "We were left emotionally scarred and damaged on the 23rd of May last year.

"We all got shot in the head and the pain has been so much at times it’s like we couldn’t breathe.

"How ironic. Because when you saw that George Floyd couldn’t breathe thousands of miles away you took it to the streets of the UK to fight for justice.

"Your boys are being so brave and strong. Mum is heartbroken. But she is being so strong.

"The journey has been devastating. Never forget, we are blessed. Sasha you are alive. The doctors said you are a miracle.

"You could be anyone’s daughter, mum, sister, cousin, aunt or friend, just at the wrong place at the wrong time.

"We are asking for justice for you. You always helped so many people, no matter their age, background or race.

"You were there for people and would do anything to help. Now is the time for people to speak up for you."

Read more: 'We will not stand by': Shell ends $3bn partnership with Russian gas firm Gazprom

Read more: 'It's all we can do': Donations pile high as hundreds of Londoners rally round Ukraine

Sasha Johnson and son Cavali (aged 11)
Sasha Johnson and son Cavali (aged 11). Picture: Met Police

Due to the serious nature of the incident and the severity of Sasha’s injuries, homicide detectives from the Met’s Specialist Crime Command took on the hunt for those responsible at an early stage.

Detective Chief Inspector Nigel Penney, who now leads the investigation, said: "I want to pay tribute to Sasha’s family who have shown incredible bravery and resilience throughout this ordeal. Their lives have been changed forever by the events of that night in May 2021.

"We have been working tirelessly to deliver justice for them and for Sasha and those efforts continue.

"Of course it was disappointing that the case against those previously charged could not be taken forward, but it has only increased our determination to continue and to find a breakthrough.

"Our biggest challenge is the wall of silence we have faced when appealing for witnesses to come forward.

"Sasha was at a party when she was shot. There were plenty of people there. Yet many have not been willing to speak to us.

Read more: Snake Island heroes who told Russian warship ‘go f**k yourself’ captured

Read more: Words of mass destruction: Truss vs Putin after Russia issues nuclear threat

Sasha Johnson and son Mykell (aged 7)
Sasha Johnson and son Mykell (aged 7). Picture: Met Police

"I know it is daunting but our officers are here to do all we can to support anyone who is willing to come forward.

"I would also appeal to the wider community. If you saw anything odd on the night, heard a careless comment in the days after, if you’ve spotted someone acting unusually or if you have any other information – no matter how insignificant – we really need you to contact us.

"Sasha was someone who always spoke up for others. Now it’s time for people to speak up for her."

Anyone with information can call the incident room on 0208 721 4622. Officers are ready to take their calls.

Anyone who does not want to contact the police directly can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, by calling 0800 555 111 or by visiting the Crimestoppers website.