A serving UK police officer has been arrested on suspicion of murder following the disappearance of a woman in London a week ago.
Sarah Everard, 33, vanished while walking home from a friend”s apartment in London on March 3.
A man in his 40s was arrested on suspicion of kidnap on Tuesday evening in relation to her disappearance, London’s Metropolitan Police said.
On Wednesday, the force said he had been arrested on suspicion of murder and a separate allegation of indecent exposure.
The last known contact with Everard was a phone call with her partner, organising plans for the following day, while she was making a 50-minute walk to her home in Brixton from Clapham.
Police are studying CCTV, doorbell footage and phone analysis to work out the exact route she took, and are asking residents & delivery drivers in the area to check any doorbell or dash-cam footage from the night.
The force said Wednesday the fact that the man is a serving police officer is “”shocking and deeply disturbing”.
The officer was not on duty at the time of Everard’s disappearance.
The force said he was arrested along with a woman who has been held on suspicion of assisting an offender.
`”This is a serious and significant development in our search for Sarah and the fact that the man who has been arrested is a serving Metropolitan Police officer is both shocking and deeply disturbing,” the Met Police’s assistant commissioner, Nick Ephgrave, told reporters.
Detectives were searching a house and woodland in Kent following the arrest of the officer and the woman.
A cordon has been put up outside a block of flats in Clapham, near where she was last seen and sniffer dogs have been used to search areas nearby.
“We have seen an overwhelming response from the public and I repeat my request for anyone with information that may be relevant to come forward, no matter how insignificant it may seem.” Detective Chief Inspector Katherine Goodwin said in a statement.