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Sarah Everard: Devastated family reveal agony of clearing out her flat

Sarah Everard and her family

Sarah Everard’s family have been left ‘broken’ by their ‘unfathomable loss’ (Picture: PA)

Sarah Everard’s family has revealed their anguish as they cleared out her flat following her tragic death.

Former Met Police officer Wayne Couzens pleaded guilty to murdering Sarah, 33, and is now facing life behind bars.

Her death has left a ‘huge hole’ in the close-knit family – who are desperately trying to come to terms with their ‘unfathomable loss’.

Sarah’s cousin, Marlene Smith, revealed how the marketing executive’s loved ones, including her parents, Jeremy and Sue, have been left ‘broken’ by her murder.

Marlene told the Daily Mail: ‘Jeremy and Sue had to clear out her apartment.

‘That was very hard although they were able to see some of Sarah’s friends and that was lovely.’

‘We are a very close family,’ said Marlene, 55. ‘This has hit us hard. Sarah was very loved by all of us.

‘Being the youngest of Jeremy’s kids, it’s a huge loss and terrible to know what she might have endured.’

We are increasingly concerned for the #missing Sarah Everard, 33, form #Brixton. She was last seen on 3rd March in the area of Clapham Common. She was wearing the green jacket and black and white trousers as on the photo (Picture: @LambethMPS)

Sarah has been described as ‘effervescent and outgoing’ and ‘incredibly kind’ (Picture: @LambethMPS / Metropolitan Police Service)

Marlene, who Sarah’s second cousin and her father’s first cousin, described the family’s ordeal as ‘heart-wrenching’.

‘The family is so broken over it,’ she added.

‘Sarah will be forever in our hearts. She was just such a lovely person, very effervescent and outgoing. Such a kind, loving person.’

The grief of losing Sarah, who would have turned 34 in June, remains ‘overwhelming’ for the family.

Couzens has pleaded guilty to murder and faces life behind bars (Picture: Metropolitan Police /AFP via Getty Images)
A court sketch of Wayne Couzens appearing at the Old Bailey on Friday (Picture: Elizabeth Cook/ PA)

Marlene, who lives in Florida, is in close contact with Jeremy and Sue but last saw Sarah when she was a teenager.

She described her as ‘very fun and friendly and kind’.

Staff at Fulford School, where Sarah studied her GCSEs and A Levels recalled her ‘kindness, care and humanity’.

Meanwhile a friend who studied with her at Durham University described her as ‘beautiful, thoughtful and incredibly kind’.

Couzens, 48, earlier pleaded guilty to kidnapping and raping Sarah.

The firearms-trained parliamentary and diplomatic protection officer pleaded guilty to her murder at the Old Bailey on Friday.

A post mortem revealed she was strangled to death after vanishing on her way home from a friend’s house in Clapham, south-west London, around 9pm on March 3.    

Undated handout issued by the Metropolitan Police showing missing woman Sarah Everard, 33, who left a friend's house in Clapham, south London, on Wednesday evening at around 9pm and began walking home to Brixton. Issue date: Tuesday March 9, 2021. PA Photo. See PA story POLICE Missing. Photo credit should read: Metropolitan Police/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

Marketing executive Sarah’s death has left her family bereft (Picture: PA)

Her body was discovered in woodland in Ashford, Kent around a week later.

Couzens’ wife, Elena, broke her silence yesterday, revealing how she is ‘just as puzzled as everyone else’.

‘(Couzens) had a beautiful family, a good house…what else did he need?

‘I’m constantly asking myself, “where did I miss the signs?”’, she told the Daily Mail.

Meanwhile Met Police commissioner, Dame Cressida Dick, admitted there is the ‘occasional bad ‘un’ within the force.

But she told how Sarah’s death had sent ‘shockwaves’ through the capital’s police community, adding: ‘The Met was angry and shocked – everybody.’

Couzens will be sentenced in September.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

For more stories like this, check our news page.

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