A police boss has apologised in response to a huge backlash caused by his suggestion that women “need to be streetwise” and that Sarah Everard “never should have submitted” to the fake arrest that led to her murder.
North Yorkshire commissioner Philip Allott later sparked anger with his comments about the case, after he urged women to learn about the “legal process”.
Speaking on BBC Radio York, Allott said women should be aware breaching Covid rules was not an indictable offence – which is one considered serious enough to warrant a prison sentence or crown court hearing.
“So women, first of all, need to be streetwise about when they can be arrested and when they can’t be arrested. She should never have been arrested and submitted to that,” he said.
“Perhaps women need to consider in terms of the legal process, to just learn a bit about that legal process”.
In a statement attempting to inform people of safety measures, they also said people should make steps to verify the identity of someone claiming to be a police officer, causing many to suggest they were placing responsibility on victims, not criminals, to stay safe.
Responding to the police chief’s comments, people were similarly outraged and many, including Labour MP Barbara Keeley, called for his resignation:
This is appalling and offensive from Conservative PCC Philip Allott
A murder victim like Sarah Everard is not to b… https://t.co/TDrK6zA0bw
— Barbara Keeley 💙 😷 (@Barbara Keeley 💙 😷)
And Nicola Sturgeon called the comments “appalling”.
These comments are appalling. It’s not up to women to fix this. It’s not us who need to change. The problem is male… https://t.co/wi4oorkP6L
In his earlier interview, Allott was also critical of the Met Police’s alleged failure to investigate two indecent exposure incidents linked to Couzens in February, describing it as a red flag for any force.
“A murderer typically commits seven crimes before going on to murder, that man we know committed at least two crimes,” he said.
“The police knew, so what should have happened is that it should have been picked up straight away.”
Indy100 has contacted the North Yorkshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for comment.