Tuesday, 15 Jun 2021

Sasha Johnson: Black equal rights activist shot by group of four men at south London party, police say

A black equal rights activist was shot by a group of four men at a party in south London on Sunday morning, police have said.

Sasha Johnson, 27, remains in critical condition in hospital after she was shot in the head, but police believe that she was not the intended target of the shooting.

Met Police Commander Alison Heydari appealed to the public for information on the shooting, saying “four black males in dark clothing” fired a gun during a party in Peckham.

“From our enquiries so far, we have established that Sasha had been at a party at a house on Consort Road in Peckham early on Sunday morning,” Cdr Heydari said.

“Around 3am a group of four black males dressed in dark coloured clothing entered the garden of the property and discharged a firearm.

“We are aware of Sasha’s involvement in the Black Lives Matter movement in the UK and I understand the concern this will cause to some communities – however, I wish to stress that at this time there is nothing to suggest Sasha was the victim of a targeted attack.

“We are also not aware of any reports of threats made against her prior to this incident.”

Ms Johnson, a mother of three, is one of the leaders of the Taking The Initiative Party (TTIP).

Following the police statement, the political party said: “The irony is the fact that the police have stated that there is no clear evidence that Sasha was the target of the attack and that there are no credible death threats made towards her.

“However, how have the police come to this conclusion without being able to speak with Sasha regarding the death threats and investigate?

“Surely, to end up in hospital having sustained a bullet shot to the head makes a death threat more credible.”

Charles Gordon, one of the party’s founding members said: “We are deeply concerned about the attack on our sister.

“She is a pillar of our community. We have had calls from various activists and leaders within the community, worried about whether the next attack could be on them.”

Ms Johnson is a prominent figure in the Black Lives Matter movement and is described as “a strong, powerful voice for our people and our community” by TTIP.

She came to prominence last year after playing a leading role in anti-racism protests, organising the Million People March in August.

Black Lives Matter UK called Ms Johnson “a fearless political campaigner” and said she was “at the forefront of many BLM protests last summer”, which were sparked following the murder of George Floyd.

On Monday, a group gathered around the bandstand in Ruskin Park, Denmark Hill, to hold a vigil for Ms Johnson close to the hospital where she is being treated.

Anybody with information should call police on 101, tweet @MetCC providing the reference CAD1172/23MAY, or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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