‘No mother or father should have to go through this’: Sister of Sabina Nessa, 28, pays tribute

Detectives say they fear killer could strike again - but that London’s streets are safe for women

Jane Dalton
Thursday 23 September 2021 15:33
<p>Ms Nessa, 28, was on her way to meet a friend when she was attacked </p>

Ms Nessa, 28, was on her way to meet a friend when she was attacked

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The sister of a teacher murdered in a London park has paid tribute to her, saying “no mother or father should have to go through this”.

Officers believe 28-year-old Sabina Nessa was killed on Friday evening during a short walk through Cator Park from her home to meet a friend at a pub in Kidbrooke, southeast London.

Detectives are investigating whether the attack was carried out by a stranger and are “keeping a completely open mind” on the killer’s motive.

Her sister tweeted: “My beautiful, talented & caring sister. My inspiration to always put myself first & never let anybody put me down.

“Never in my life did I or my sisters or my mum or dad think this could happen to us. May Allah grant her Jannah. Ameen #SabinaNessa.”

She also wrote: “3 sisters down to 2,” adding a broken heart emoji. “Pls make dua for her. No mother or father should have to go through this, may Allah grant my parents ease.” In Islam, making dua is a plea or profound prayer to god.

Detective Chief Superintendent Trevor Lawry said that police were concerned about the possibility of another attack, but that there was nothing to suggest it would happen.

Asked whether police had any leads, he said: “There’s significant lines of inquiry at the moment and they’re ones that I can’t divulge.”

He insisted London’s streets were safe for women. “I’d like to reassure the public around that, I’d like to make sure that people are free to walk around free from fear and my officers will make sure that that can take place,” he said.

On whether anything has changed in how the Metropolitan Police tackle violent crime against women since Sarah Everard’s death, he said: “I think the main things that are changing are that: one, we’re listening to people, we’re understanding where people are feeling not so safe, and we’re putting out patrols to make sure that we do that.

“This isn’t just a policing issue, there’s lots of issues to be able to make people feel safe in an open space and we’re working with our partners to ensure we do that.”

He added that officers would attend a planned vigil for Ms Nessa on Friday.

A spokesman for prime minister Boris Johnson said: “You’ll appreciate I can’t comment further whilst the police (investigation) is ongoing, but as the Met Police have said, they’re using every resource available to find the individual responsible.”

He said the government introduced its strategy on violence against women and girls this year.