Sarah Everard’s murder sparked a wave of concern for women’s safety


he murder of Sarah Everard is one of many violent deaths that have raised concerns about the safety of women.

Following the murder, vigils were held in cities across the UK both in her memory and as protests highlighting the steps women are forced to take to try to protect themselves.

Her death, at the hands of a police officer as she walked along a busy London road at 9.30pm, has led to thousands of girls and women sharing their experiences and fears.

A mural by Irish artist Emmalene Blake in Dublin city center created following the death of Miss Everard (Niall Carson/PA) / PA wire

A Home Office inquiry into the handling of violence against women and girls has been reopened following the murder of Miss Everard and received over 160,000 responses.

Activist Karen Ingala Smith, who runs a project called Counting Dead Women, said so far this year in the UK 109 women have died in violent circumstances where the suspect or suspects are men.

Those cases include primary school teacher Sabina Nessa, 28, who was killed as she walked to a bar near her flat in Kidbrooke, south-east London on September 17.

Delivery driver Koci Selamaj, 36, of Terminus Road, Eastbourne, East Sussex, appeared before magistrates earlier this week charged with his murder.

Other inquests include the death of Maria Rawlings, 45, who was beaten and strangled on her way home from hospital in Romford, east London, in May. Valentin Lazar, 20, from Barking, east London, has been charged with her murder.

Agnes Akom, who died after disappearing from her home in north-west London in May. (Metropolitan Police/AP)

Hungarian Agnes Akom, 20, disappeared from her home in Cricklewood Broadway, north-west London in May and her body was found more than a month later at Neasden Recreation Park, Brent, north-west of London.

Truck driver Neculai Paizan, 63, of Peel Street, Notting Hill, west London, denies murder.

Outside the capital, cases include PCSO Julia James who was killed while walking her dog in the Kent countryside in April. Callum Wheeler, 21, of Aylesham, Kent, is charged with her murder.

In Derbyshire, Gracie Spinks, 23, was allegedly killed by her former colleague Michael Sellers in Duckmanton after he harassed her.

It is believed that he committed suicide, but inquests have yet to take place.

Sisters Bibaa Henry (left) and Nicole Smallman, who were murdered last year (Metropolitan Police/PA) / PA Media

Back in London, a case from last year that sparked horror was the murder of sisters Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman, who were stabbed to death by 19-year-old Danyal Hussein in June.

He believed he had made a pact with a demon that he would win the lottery if he killed women.

The siblings had been staying together in Fryent Country Park, Wembley, north-west London after meeting friends to celebrate Miss Henry’s 46th birthday when Hussein stabbed them repeatedly.

The teenager, from Guy Barnet Grove, Eltham, south-east London, was found guilty of their murders earlier this year but has not yet been sentenced.

Mara R. Wilmoth