Sabina Nessa vigil: latest news on murdered school teacher found in Cator Park - as police release CCTV images

‘Sabina’s journey should have taken just over five minutes but she never made it to her destination’ - what happened to her?

A vigil will be held to remember a primary school teacher killed in a London park.

A member of the public found the body of Sabina Nessa in Cator Park in Kidbrooke, south-east London, on Saturday after what police have described as a “shocking murder”.

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Ms Nessa, 28, had been walking to meet a friend at a pub near her home last Friday, a journey that should have taken just five minutes, when she was fatally attacked.

Ms Nessa’s cousin Zubel Ahmed remembered her as a “beautiful soul” who loved teaching. He also told the BBC that she “was the most caring person – kindest, sweetest girl you could meet”.

Here is everything you need to know.

What happened to Sabina Nessa?

Officers investigating the killing of the 28-year-old said she left her home on Astell Road and walked through Cator Park on 17 September towards The Depot bar in Pegler Square, Kidbrooke Village, when she was attacked.

The Metropolitan Police said her body was found near the OneSpace community centre at Kidbrooke Park Road in the Royal Borough of Greenwich on Saturday.

Detective Superintendent Luke Marks said: “We believe that Sabina was attacked at around 8.30pm last Friday as she walked through Cator Park in Kidbrooke.

“This did not happen in the middle of the night; people would have been in and around the park at the time.”

A post-mortem examination carried out at Greenwich Mortuary on Monday (20 September) found the cause of Nessa’s death as inconclusive.

Her body was not found until hours after she was attacked, the force said.

Det Supt Marks said there was a “short delay” in finding the body of Sabina Nessa, 28, after she was killed on Friday evening at Cator Park in Kidbrooke, south-east London, because it was “not on the main walkway”.

Speaking at the force’s New Scotland Yard headquarters, he said: “It wasn’t on the main walkway in the park, so that was the reason for the small delay in Sabina being found.”

Are there any suspects?

A man captured on CCTV near where primary school teacher Sabina Nessa was killed is being urgently sought by police.

The Metropolitan Police issued footage and images of the man which show him walking in Pegler Square in Kidbrooke, south-east London, on the evening the 28-year-old was attacked.

A 12-second clip shows a balding man wearing a black hooded coat and grey jeans looking over his shoulder and pulling at his hood as he walks down a path.

Detectives have also released an image, captured in the same area, of a silver car they believe the man has access to and appealed for anyone who recognised either to contact the force immediately.

Detective chief inspector Neil John, from the Met’s Specialist Crime Command, said “an extensive trawl” of CCTV in the area continued and said information on the man’s identity and whereabouts could be “vital” to the investigation.

Detectives are investigating whether Nessa was killed by a stranger who is still at large, a senior officer has said.

The Metropolitan Police said a 38-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of Ms Nessa’s murder.

The suspect was arrested at an address in Lewisham on Thursday and is being questioned in custody.

It is the second arrest Scotland Yard has made in connection with the attack.

On Saturday, detectives arrested a man in his 40s on suspicion of murder before he was released under further investigation.

How can I help?

Det Supt Marks has appealed for anyone who saw anything suspicious in the park, and for any motorists with dashcam footage from surrounding roads to contact police.

Detective Inspector Joe Garrity said: “Sabina’s journey should have taken just over five minutes but she never made it to her destination.

“We know the community are rightly shocked by this murder – as are we – and we are using every resource available to us to find the individual responsible.”

He added the investigation was making good progress and said: “We believe there are still others out there who may have information that could help.

“If you think you saw Sabina or any suspicious behaviour in or around the park on Friday evening please speak to us.”

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 0208 721 4266 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

When is the vigil?

A vigil is due to be held in her memory on Friday at 7pm in Pegler Square, Kidbrooke.

Vigil organisers Reclaim the Streets said it is “angry and heartbroken” about the murder and called on the Government to do something about “an epidemic of violence unfolding in front of our eyes.”

Those who cannot be there in person are invited to light a candle on their doorstep at the same time.

More coverage from our sister title LondonWorld:

An ‘epidemic of male violence against women’

Ministers must act with a “sense of urgency” to prevent further violence against women and girls, a Labour former minister has said.

Mother of the House of Commons Harriet Harman said “women in leading positions have a special duty to deliver for other women” as she asked the Government for an update on its strategy to tackle violence against women and girls.

She told MPs: “We need more of a sense of urgency about this. In just the last few days we have seen more horrific killings of women.”

Home Office minister Rachel Maclean said the Government was “working carefully and closely” through the findings of its report and “have made progress”.

Asking an urgent question in the Commons Ms Harman said: “In Sheffield 35-year-old Terri Harris, killed together with three children, John Paul Bennett, Lacey Bennett and Connie Gent. In Greenwich, primary school teacher Sabina Nessa, who was only 28 years old.

“Her Majesty’s inspector of police, Zoe Billingham, rightly described this as an ‘epidemic of male violence against women’.”

The Camberwell and Peckham MP added: “We have got a woman Home Secretary and I believe women in leading positions have a special duty to deliver for other women.”

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