Leading black rights activist 'critical' after being shot in the head

A leading member of the UK’s Black Lives Matter movement is in a critical condition in hospital after being shot in the head.

May 24, 2021
By Tony Thompson
Sasha Johnson

Sasha Johnson, 27, was found shortly before 3am on Sunday (May 23) after officers from the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) were called to reports of gunshots in Consort Road, southeast London.

A statement from the Taking The Initiative Party (TTIP), an economic and political group Ms Johnson works for, said the shooting followed “numerous death threats”. The group said the Oxford graduate was “a strong, powerful voice for our people and our community”.

The TTIP added: “It is with great sadness that we inform you that our own Sasha Johnson has sustained a gunshot wound to her head. She is currently hospitalised and in a critical condition. The incident happened in the early hours of this morning, following numerous death threats.

“Sasha has always been actively fighting for black people and the injustices that surround the black community, as well as being both a member of Black Lives Matter and a member of TTIP’s executive leadership committee.”

Her profile page on the TTIP website says: “She has an immense passion for implementing change and justice and has been actively supporting the eradication of injustices in society by attending and leading protests. Although not everyone may agree with her methods, she is not afraid to stand up for what she believes in. She is also committed to feeding the homeless and has personally been involved in delivering food and groceries to families that are in need.”

Detectives from the MPS’s specialist crime command are leading the investigation. Detective Chief Inspector Jimi Tele said: “This was a shocking incident that has left a young woman with very serious injuries. Our thoughts are with her family who are being provided with support at this terribly difficult time.”

Despite claims made by the TTIP, the MPS said at this stage there was no evidence to suggest it was a targeted shooting or that she had received any credible threats against her prior to the incident.

Claudia Webbe, Labour MP for Leicester East, was among those who went online to express “solidarity” with Ms Johnson. She said: “We were all out last year for Black Lives Matter. I only know her as an activist on these issues of Black Lives Matter. I support Black Lives Matter and therefore support what she was doing.

“As a member of Parliament I stand in full solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement and I stand with her work in the Black Lives Matter movement.”

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