Family and friends gather for funeral of Sabrina Moss
- Credit: Archant
The funeral of a nursery teacher who was shot dead after apparently being caught in cross fire took place today, as police investigating her murder made fresh witness appeals.
Relatives and friends of Sabrina Moss, 24, packed into the Church of Saint Alphage in Montrose Avenue, Burnt Oak, which was decorated with white ribbons inside and out.
Miss Moss was shot in the chest in Kilburn High Road on August 24 after an evening out celebrating her birthday.
Her friend, Sabrina Gachette, also 24, was taken to hospital with a gunshot wound.
Today, many of Miss Moss’ relatives arrived arm in arm and brought with them flowers which they placed carefully by the entrance to the church before the service began.
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One message among the flowers, which were piled high, read: “You were taken so soon you will be missed everyday.”
Her mother was escorted last into the church by Father Dane Batley-Gladden, and the coffin arrived in a glass carriage pulled by two white horses.
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The vicar said: “We need to confront honestly and robustly the sin at the heart of the situation. The word ‘tragedy’ is used too easily and too often, and yet here is a true tragedy.
“A young woman, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a friend is wrenched from us suddenly, in appalling violence, and all of us here are living with the consequences of that.
“There is too much of this on our streets but the responsibility for starting to turn the tide doesn’t rest with everybody else, with people out there, far away, it starts with us. For we must send out the message that weapons have no place in our community.”
Speaking after the funeral service, detective inspector Joe Daly issued another appeal for more witnesses to come forward to help with the murder inquiry.
He said: “So far we have received an excellent response from the public and one person has been charged in connection with the murder but today I am making a further appeal for further witnesses to come forward.
“I believe that there are people out there who know the identity of other suspects involved in this shooting and I urge them to contact us immediately.
“We know that there were a large number of people around the Kilburn High Road area in the early hours of Saturday August 24 and we believe that there are members of the public who have heard information about the shooting and I would urge them to contact us.”
Police believe the women were “in the wrong place at the wrong time”.
Just a week earlier, Miss Moss had moved in to a new home with her partner Arron and their young son.
Paying tribute at the time, he said: “Words can’t describe my pain and this pain is with me forever.
“Sabrina was loved by everyone but for me and my son it was beyond love and words, she was our life.”
Police have previously said they believed a number of people were in Messina Avenue at the junction with Kilburn High Road shortly beforehand.
Detective chief inspector Andy Partridge said: “The tragic events of last month have left Sabrina’s mother, father, partner, siblings and friends completely devastated.
Sabrina’s family especially are still coming to terms with the
heartbreaking event that has led to her death and no family should have to mourn the loss of much loved individual under these circumstances.
“Sabrina had just set up a new home with her partner and four-year-old son and he will now sadly grow up not knowing his mother.
“I’m asking people to find it within their conscience to speak up and help us with out inquiry.
“From the extensive inquiries that we have carried out we know that there were a number of people in Messina Avenue at the junction with Kilburn High Road shortly before the shooting and there is a possibility that they would have seen two men loitering close to some cars parked in Messina Avenue.
“The two males were wearing dark clothing and hooded tops, with one wearing a lighter coloured top than the other.
“I am appealing to anyone who remembers walking past these two people to come forward.
“You may not be aware of the significance of what you may have seen but let us decide whether the information you hold is key to this investigation.
“I am also urging anyone who was involved in the incident to hand themselves into the police whilst they have the opportunity. My team of dedicated officers are working tirelessly to seek those involved and those failing to give themselves up will be pursued until we have caught all those we believe are responsible.
“Likewise I am also urging those who may be harbouring or assisting anyone caught up in this incident to come and speak to us, we will treat your information in the strictest of confidence”.
Martell Warren, 22, has been charged with Miss Moss’ murder and is due to appear at the Old Bailey on November 19.