Sabina Nessa vigil: sister says ‘our world is shattered’ in emotional tribute to murdered primary school teacher
Sabina Nessa’s family have paid tribute to the murdered primary school teacher at a vigil for her in Kidbrooke, south-east London
Hundreds of mourners gathered for a candlelit vigil in memory of the “amazing, caring, beautiful” primary school teacher Sabina Nessa, as the police hunt for her killer entered its second week.
Family members wiped away tears as they spoke movingly of the sorrow the 28-year-old’s murder had caused, with detectives renewing appeals for information about a man captured on CCTV around the time and place of her death last Friday.
At-a-glance: 5 key points
- More than 500 people gathered in an emotional vigil for Sabina Nessa in Pegler Square, Kidbrooke, south-east London.
- Those attending the vigil – where mourners were asked to “say her name” in a show of solidarity – and a separate rally earlier in the evening at East London Mosque heard powerful testimony from Ms Nessa’s family.
- Her sister Jebina Yasmin Islam said: “We have lost an amazing, caring, beautiful sister, who left this world far too early.”
- The Duchess of Cambridge shared a personal message on Twitter, describing how she was “saddened by the loss of another innocent young woman on our streets”.
- Police have released CCTV footage of a man they want to trace who was spotted near to where Ms Nessa was killed.
What was said at the vigil?
Detective Chief Inspector Trevor Lawry told the more than 500 people gathered at the vigil: “Please help us catch the person responsible for this shocking incident.”
Jebina Yasmin Islam, Ms Nessa’s sister, broke down as she addressed crowds at the vigil.
She said: “I just want to say thank you to everyone who came today to show support for my sister.
“We have lost an amazing, caring, beautiful sister, who left this world far too early.”
She added: “Sabina loved her family. Words cannot describe how we are feeling, this feels like we are stuck in a bad dream and can’t get out of it – our world is shattered, we are simply lost for words.
“No family should go through what we are going through.”
Ms Nessa’s uncle Shahin Miah described his niece as “a kind and a open-minded person”, who was “always smiling and helping others”.
He said Ms Nessa’s death has “once again brought to the fore the question of women’s safety on the streets”.
In his statement, he said: “We don’t want what happened to Sabina to happen to anyone else. We don’t want any other mother’s chest to be empty or filled with deep sorrow, or to see the tears in the eyes of any father.”
On Twitter, the Duchess of Cambridge wrote: “I am saddened by the loss of another innocent young woman on our streets.
“My thoughts are with Sabina’s family and friends, and all those who have been affected by this tragic event. C”
The message was signed off personally with her initial. It is understood flowers have been laid on the duchess’s behalf.
In March, the duchess privately visited the memorial to murdered marketing executive Sarah Everard in Clapham Common, south-west London, after the 33-year-old was killed by off-duty police officer Wayne Couzens.
Background: a murder that shocked the nation
Ms Nessa had been walking to meet a friend at a pub near her home when she was fatally attacked in Cator Park.
Her body was discovered by a member of the public the next day, having been hidden under a pile of leaves, it was reported.
Two men were separately arrested on suspicion of her murder but were subsequently released under investigation.
The Metropolitan Police remain keen to trace a third man spotted near where Ms Nessa was killed on the night she died.
They released a 12-second clip showing a balding man wearing a black hooded coat and grey jeans, holding an orange object, looking over his shoulder and pulling at his hood.
Detectives also circulated an image, captured in the same area, of a silver car they believe the man had access to and appealed for anyone who recognised either to contact the force immediately.
Anyone with information about Ms Nessa’s death is asked to contact police.
A message from the editor:
Thank you for reading. NationalWorld is a new national news brand, produced by a team of journalists, editors, video producers and designers who live and work across the UK. Find out more about who’s who in the team, and our editorial values. We want to start a community among our readers, so please follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and keep the conversation going. You can also sign up to our email newsletters and get a curated selection of our best reads to your inbox every day.