Libby Squire mother pleads for new law after Everard's killer jailed

Libby Squire mother pleads for new law after Everard's killer jailed


Mother of murdered student Libby Squire is pleading for a new law to stop sex offenders from escalating their crimes after Sarah Everard’s killer Wayne Couzens pleaded guilty

  • Lisa Squire fears no lessons have been learned since daughter Libby’s murder
  • She wants minor sexual offenders to be offered therapy as an intervention
  • She hopes it will stop low-level offenders from escalating crimes against women
  • Libby Squire was raped and murdered by butcher Pawel Relowicz in 2019

The mother of murdered student Libby Squire is calling for new action to stop sex offenders from potentially killing as she reached out to the family of Sarah Everard.

Lisa Squire, 51, said she feared no lessons have been learned since her daughter was raped and murdered in 2019 by Polish butcher Pawel Relowicz.

Relowicz, like Wayne Couzens, 48, who on Friday admitted killing Sarah after snatching her off a London street in March, had committed sexual offences before the killing.

The father-of-two had spent 18 months patrolling the streets of Hull and had raided homes for sex toys and stared through strangers’ windows while masturbating.

The convicted murderer had an ‘uncontrollable sexual deviancy’, the court heard, that caused him to rape university student Libby before callously dumping her ‘dead or dying’ in the River Hull.

Libby’s mother Lisa said her heart broke at the similarities with the Sarah Everard case, which caused a national outcry over the violence suffered by women.

Lisa Squire, 51, said she feared no lessons have been learned since her daughter (pictured together) was raped and murdered in 2019 by Polish butcher Pawl Relowicz

On Friday, Wayne Couzens (left) admitted raping and killing Sarah Everard  (right) after snatching her off a south London street

She told The Sunday Mirror: ‘I remember hearing about Sarah’s death and thinking we have learned nothing from Libby’s murder.

‘If I had a message for Sarah’s family it would be to remember her and don’t give her killer power by thinking about him.’

It comes as pressure mounts on the Metropolitan Police to explain why firearms officer Wayne Couzens was hired despite suspicions about his behaviour.

The cop was referred to as ‘The Rapist’ and drove around naked years before he was hired by the force, it has been claimed.

Kent Police – with whom he volunteered from 2005 to 2009 – received a complaint from a male motorist that a man had been spotted driving around Dover naked from the waist down. 

Pawel Relowicz, 26, who was found guilty of raping and murdering Libby Squire, 21, was photographed grinning in a pair on reindeer antlers just weeks before he killed the student

Relowicz was jailed for 27 years at Sheffield Crown Court after being found guilty of raping and murdering Libby Squire (pictured)

The claim comes as several women step forward to make historic accusations of harassment against Couzens who had been accused of indecent exposure three times before Sarah was killed.

Ms Squire is now calling for a change in the law to stop similar sex offenders from escalating their crimes.

She met Safeguarding Minister VIctoria Atkins as part of a campaign to offer therapy to low-level offenders.

MPs Diana Johnson and Steve Baker have backed her calls for change to stop similar incidents occurring.

Wayne Couzens’ ex-colleagues at the Civil Nuclear Constabulary (CNC), where the 48-year-old (pictured left and right) joined in March 2011, reportedly nicknamed him ‘The Rapist’ because he made some female officers feel uncomfortable

Ms Squire said: ‘Men don’t wake up one morning thinking “I’m going to rape or kill today”. It starts off with flashing, voyeurism, following women.

‘If there’s no intervention for lesser offences they think they can get away with it and up the ante. There’s an idea men who flash are just dirty old men. But Libby’s killer was a young man, Sarah’s was a police officer.’

How was he still on the force? Killer cop was caught flashing six years ago and four days BEFORE he snatched Sarah Everard

As Dame Cressida Dick apologised after Wayne Couzens’ guilty plea at court yesterday morning, her force refused to comment on what other crimes he may now been linked to.

But the IOPC laid bare a series of worrying incidents and said it had served 12 officers from several forces with gross misconduct or misconduct notices with multiple investigations ongoing.

One gross misconduct notice and six misconduct notices relate to a probe into allegations officers from ‘a number of forces’ breached standards of professional behaviour by sharing information linked to the prosecution of Couzens via a messaging app.

Gross misconduct notices have been served to three officers over an investigation into a probationary Met Police constable who allegedly shared an inappropriate graphic relating to the Sarah Everard case with officers over social media before subsequently manning the cordon at the scene of the search for her.

A probe into the Metropolitan Police’s alleged failure to investigate allegations of indecent exposure linked to Couzens in February 2021 continues with two officers being investigated for possible breaches of professional standards that may amount to misconduct.

A separate investigation is also ongoing into claims Kent Police failed to investigate an incident of indecent exposure in 2015, but no notices have been served by the IOPC to officers over this.

An investigation into how Wayne Couzens sustained head injuries while in custody on both March 10 and March 12 following his arrest has almost concluded, the IOPC said, with all officers involved treated as witnesses.

Kent Assistant Chief Constable Tom Richards said: ‘Kent Police made a referral to the Independent Office for Police Conduct in relation to its investigation into an alleged indecent exposure in Dover in June 2015. ‘It would be inappropriate to comment further whilst the IOPC continues to carry out its independent investigation.’

The mother also urged women to report non-contact sexual offences saying it could help save a woman’s life and Libby’s death would not be in vain.   

It comes as the IOPC confirmed Couzens was suspected of two other indecent exposures feared not to have been properly probed by the Met force days before he killed Sarah. 

Despite the past cases, Couzens was still a member of the elite Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection squad at the time of Sarah’s killing – a role that entitled him to carry a firearm and a Metropolitan Police warrant card.

He was also equipped with a Heckler and Koch G36 rifle while working at the CNC, as part of the team protecting Sellafield and later Dungeness nuclear power station. 

His odd behaviour there is rumoured to have been what made female workers feel uneasy – although the Civil Nuclear Police Federation confirmed there were no official complaints about him. 

In total, Couzens had been accused of indecent exposure three times before he abducted Ms Everard in Clapham, south London, on March 3.

He pleaded guilty at the Old Bailey to the murder of the marketing executive on Friday, having previously admitted her kidnap and rape.

Five members of Ms Everard’s family were joined by Met Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick in court to watch as Couzens, head bowed and shaking, entered his whispered plea by video link from Belmarsh prison.

During the 20-minute hearing Lord Justice Fulford discussed the possibility of a whole-life order as he adjourned sentencing until September 29.

Dame Cressida spoke to the family before making a statement on the steps of the Old Bailey.

She said that she had told the Everard family ‘how very sorry I am for their loss, for their pain and their suffering’.

She said: ‘All of us in the Met are sickened, angered and devastated by this man’s crimes – they are dreadful. Everyone in policing feels betrayed.’

The wife of Couzens also told of her horror at the police officer’s sickening crimes and her distress at failing to spot any warning signs in the months before Ms Everard’s kidnap and murder.

Speaking exclusively to MailOnline, Elena Couzens, 38, said: ‘I keep on asking ‘why?’ What Wayne did wasn’t human behaviour.’

His wife of 15 years said she is still picking up the pieces of her shattered life and rebuilding it together with the couple’s two young children.

‘If I had any idea what was going on in Wayne’s head, then none of this would’ve happened but I didn’t know anything,’ she said.

‘He didn’t appear to be acting strangely. I didn’t notice anything was wrong. I’m working full time, most of the time I’m dropping the children off at school and picking them up, I have a really busy lifestyle.

‘I can’t comprehend it because he never once previously showed any glimpse of violence, he was never that way. I’m just as puzzled as everyone else. 

Wayne Couzens seen in a court sketch during a previous hearing relating to the case. He pleaded guilty at the Old Bailey to the murder of the marketing executive on Friday

Met commissioner Dame Cressida Dick (pictured) said that she had told the Everard family ‘how very sorry I am for their loss, for their pain and their suffering’

‘I saw nothing wrong. He had a beautiful family, a good house… what else did he need? I’m constantly asking myself “where I did miss the signs?” How on earth could this have happened?’ 

Harriet Wistrich, director of the Centre for Women’s Justice, is among those calling for a full public inquiry into ‘police failures and misconduct and the wider culture of misogyny’ following Couzens’ guilty plea.

Ms Everard’s murder sparked protests by women fearing for their own safety earlier this year.

Ms Wistrich said: ‘As protesters made clear, women do not feel safe and it is incumbent on the Government and all criminal justice agencies to now take action over the epidemic of male violence which is the other public health crisis of our day.’

Nick Thomas Symonds, the shadow home secretary, has also urged police to review their vetting process. 

A number of areas were searched in Clapham as police tried to look for the missing 33-year-old in March this year before they turned the hunt to Kent

Sarah’s family leave the Old Bailey after a previous hearing where Couzens made two guilty pleas. Her father Jeremy is seen on the left, with her sister Katie who can be seen on the right

CCTV footage of Sarah Everard captured earlier on the night she was kidnapped in south London in March this year

The Labour MP said: ‘Society puts huge trust in the police to keep us safe and the vast majority of officers who serve their communities so bravely who will all be appalled by this case.

‘It is absolutely vital that everything possible is done to ensure this can never happen again.

‘The Metropolitan Police and wider policing must look at vetting processes and their own safeguarding systems to ensure people who pose a threat to the public are not able to hold such vital positions of trust.’

The IOPC has launched an investigation into alleged failures by Kent Police to investigate the indecent exposure allegation against Couzens dating back to 2015.

An IOPC probe is also ongoing into alleged failures by the Met to investigate two allegations of indecent exposure linked to Couzens in London in February this year, with two officers under investigation for possible breaches of professional standards.

The watchdog said a total of 12 gross misconduct or misconduct notices have so far been served on police officers from several forces relating to the Couzens case.

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