Sarah Everard murder: Police chief Dame Cressida Dick "tone-deaf and dismissive" during MP meeting

Dame Cressida Dick Credit: PA

Under-fire Metropolitan Police chief Dame Cressida Dick has held an emergency meeting with London MPs over concerns following Sarah Everard’s murder, but was “tone-deaf and dismissive”, it has been claimed.

Several women MPs also openly called for Dame Cressida to resign at the meeting earlier today and were critical of her lack of plans to protect women on the capital’s streets, ITV News understands.

It comes with pressure growing for the Met Police Commissioner to quit over the force’s handling of the Sarah Everard case.

In a statement, The Metropolitan Police said: "The Commissioner continues to engage with a range of stakeholders, including London MPs, to brief them and listen to their views as the Met works to build trust and confidence."

Wayne Couzens was captured on CCTV stopping Sarah Everard and making a false arrest to kidnap her Credit: Met Police/PA

Former Met Officer Wayne Couzens was given a rare whole-life sentence for the murder of Sarah Everard yesterday.

During his sentencing, it emerged he likely used his knowledge of Covid laws to falsely arrest Ms Everard, before kidnapping, raping and murdering her.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct is investigating potential failures by the Met in the lead up to the murder.

ITV News has spoken to three people who attended the meeting with Dame Cressida, who have accused her of setting out no new plans to protect women. Her behaviour was described by one MP as “tone-deaf and dismissive”.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson talks to recruits during a 2019 visit to Metropolitan Police training college in Hendon, north London Credit: Aaron Chown/PA

The meeting was held this afternoon.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has backed Dame Cressida, saying the British public can trust the police and hiring more female officers "can make the most fundamental change".

"I think there will be hundreds of thousands of police officers, let alone myself, up and down the country who will be absolutely heart sick by the appalling murder of Sarah Everard by a police officer," Mr Johnson said.

"I want to make it clear: I do believe in the police, I do think we can trust the police and I think the police do a wonderful, wonderful job.

"We’ve got to get to the bottom of what happened with Wayne Couzens. We make sure nothing like the happens again."

Labour MP Yvette Cooper has called on the government to launch an inquiry, similar to the one carried out into Harold Shipman's murders, into the police following Couzens' conviction.

"The government need to recognise how serious this is," Ms Cooper told ITVNews.

"After the awful Shipman murders there was a proper independent inquiry that looked at howa dangerous man had managed to work as a GP for so long and abused thatposition of trust. 

"We’ve got no sign of anything similar this time to look at a serious of how a dangerousman in the police service for so many years and what needs to change in termsof culture, systems and policies.

"They’ve got to learn from the past and make sure they have an independent inquirynow."

The policing minister said earlier on Friday that there is a "massive question mark" hanging over the Metropolitan Police following the murder of Ms Everard by a serving officer, thepolicing minister has said.

But Kit Malthouse insisted force boss Cressida Dick is the best person to restore the UK'strust in police.

Mr Malthouse accepted the kidnap, rape and murder of Ms Everard by former officer WayneCouzens had damaged the reputation of police in the UK, but said he hoped themurderer was just "one bad apple".

Following Couzens' whole life sentence, the Met said it will no longer deploy plain clothes officers on their own after the Old Bailey heard Couzens had used lockdown rules and shown his warrant card to falsely arrest Ms Everard during the abduction.