Sarah Everard killer Wayne Couzens to appeal life sentence

27 October 2021, 08:57 | Updated: 27 October 2021, 08:59

Wayne Couzens has reportedly lodged an appeal against his whole life sentence
Wayne Couzens has reportedly lodged an appeal against his whole life sentence. Picture: Alamy

By Megan Hinton

Wayne Couzens has reportedly lodged an appeal against his whole life sentence, after pleading guilty to the rape and murder of Sarah Everard.

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The former Metropolitan Police officer used his warrant card and handcuffs when he kidnapped Ms Everard as she walked home in Clapham, south London, on the evening of March 3.

Sentencing Couzens to a whole life sentence last month, Lord Justice Fulford said Sarah Everard was a "wholly blameless victim of a grotesquely executed series of circumstances that culminated in her death and the disposal of her body".

"She was simply walking home," he said. 

"Sarah Everard's state of mind, and what she had to endure would have been as bleak and agonising as it is possible to imagine."

But according to a report in the Mirror, a court official said on Tuesday: "We have been notified that an appeal has been lodged by Mr Couzens."

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If permission is granted the case will be heard by the Court of Appeal Criminal Division.

Currently Couzens is one of over 60 criminals serving whole-life sentences. Other criminals serving the sentence include Rosemary West and Jeremy Bamber.

Lord Justice Fulford added during sentencing: "Notwithstanding his guilty pleas, in my view the defendant throughout sought to minimise his true responsibility for what occurred. At no stage has he offered any kind of full explanation as to what occurred in the fateful few hours.

"I have concluded that in the planning and thought that went into the kidnap and rape the defendant must have realised he may well need to kill the woman he intended to kidnap and rape."

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The judge said whole life sentences should only be used for exceptional cases - and this, he said, is one.

"In my judgement the misuse of a police officer's role is of equal seriousness as a murder carried out for the purpose of committing a murder for an ideological cause."

Sarah's family previously said she "lost her life needlessly and cruelly" and her future was stolen by the killer PC.

"We are very pleased that Wayne Couzens has received a full life sentence and will spend the rest of his life in jail," they said.

"Nothing can make things better, nothing can bring Sarah back, but knowing he will be imprisoned forever brings some relief.

"The world is a safer place with him imprisoned."