Kate Middleton's visit to Sarah Everard vigil was legal, confirms Dame Cressida Dick

The Metropolitan Police Commissioner sent troops to disband Sarah Everard vigil just hours after Kate Middleton's visit

Kate Middleton
(Image credit: Jane Barlow - WPA Pool/Getty Images))

Kate Middleton's appearance at Sarah Everard's vigil has been publicly addressed by Dame Cressida Dick in a recent interview with the BBC. 

The Duchess of Cambridge was photographed as she paid tribute to Sarah in Clapham Common on March 13, just hours before the Metropolitan Police stormed the park to disband a peaceful protest. 

Its commissioner, who was appointed as the head of the London police force in 2017, has now declared that Kate Middleton's visit was legal. 

"She's in the course of her duties, she was working," Dame Cressida told BBC Radio 4's Today program. She went on to emphasize that the duchess attended the vigil in its early stages and that her troops waited six hours before intervening. 

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - NOVEMBER 11: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 24 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service Dame Cressida Dick attends a service to mark the centenary of the burial of the Unknown Warrior at Westminster Abbey on November 11, 2020 in London, England. The service is to commemorate the funeral of an unknown British serviceman, the Unknown Warrior, whose body was brought from Northern France and buried at the west end of the nave in Westminster Abbey on 11th November 1920 to represent all those who lost their lives in the First World War but whose place of death was not known, or whose bodies remained unidentified. (Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images/Pool)

Dame Cressida Dick said Kate Middleton's visit at Sarah Everard vigil was legal 

(Image credit: Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images/Pool))

"At that point, people had a whole series of potential reasonable excuses for being away from home, we didn't all have them," the police chief said. "I've picked out one that may apply to her but, let's be clear, there was a very calm vigil to which she attended where lots and lots of people came."

Dame Cressida insisted that Kate's actions were fully legal, as there were no lockdown restrictions against visiting parks or laying down flowers. 

"It was clearly possible under the law for somebody who lived locally to walk, as many did, and lay flowers legally; there are other reasons why people might be in the area and they could have laid flowers calmly and peacefully, potentially legally," she said. 

Kate appeared at Clapham Common to offer her respects to Sarah, whose body was found in Kent after she disappeared from the busy London borough on March 3. The visit was not recorded in the Court Circular, the official list of royal engagements, meaning it occurred on Kate's private time. The duchess also sent a heartfelt letter to Sarah's family, in which she expressed her 'absolute sadness' at the horrific tragedy. 

Emma Dooney
Emma Dooney

Emma is a news writer for woman&home and My Imperfect Life. She covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health or lifestyle story. When she's not reporting on the British monarchy and A-list celebs, you can find her whipping up vegan treats and running the roads to cheesy '90s pop music...but not at the same time, obviously.