Ilford crossbow killing: Sana Muhammad's death 'shocked people to core'

Image caption,
Sana Muhammad died in hospital on Monday

The death of a pregnant woman who was killed in a crossbow attack in her own home has "shocked people to the core", an MP has said.

Sana Muhammad, 35, died on Monday after the attack in Ilford, east London, but her unborn son was delivered safely.

Ilford North MP Wes Streeting said in Parliament her death had left people in shock "up and down the country".

Prime Minister Theresa May said laws around crossbows would be reviewed after Mrs Muhammad's death.

Ramanodge Unmathallegadoo, 50, of no fixed address, has been charged with Mrs Muhammad's murder and is due to appear at the Old Bailey on Thursday.

Speaking at Prime Minister's Questions, Mr Streeting said: "I know I will speak for every member of this House in expressing our deepest condolences to the family and our best wishes to the baby for a speedy recovery.

"Given these weapons, like the crossbow, used to kill my constituent are readily for sale online, can I urge the Prime Minister to urgently and seriously look at expanding the Offensive Weapons Bill so that we can toughen the scope of the laws governing the sale, the possession and the use of these deadly weapons."

Mrs May responded by saying crossbows were "subject to strict controls", but the government would "consider the risk to public safety and whether further measures are needed".

Image caption,
The Met Police said the newborn baby remains in hospital in a "stable condition"

Offers of help for Mrs Muhammad's family, including a pledge to cover funeral costs, have flooded in from the community.

Redbridge Council leader Jas Athwal said the authority would support the family for "as long as it is needed".

Nearly £3,000 has also been raised through a Go Fund Me page, which described the death of Mrs Muhammad as "unimaginable".

Mohamed Omer from the Gardens of Peace cemetery and funeral company said: "The entire Muslim community and the entire Redbridge community is in absolute shock as to what has happened.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the family.

"In order to help them cope, we are making the family of Sana Muhammad know that they need to not worry about funeral costs as we will be covering them."

Image caption,
Police said the victim and the suspect were known to each other

Mrs Muhammad was attacked in front of her five other children in the family home on Applegarth Road, her husband Imtiaz Muhammad told the Evening Standard.

She was taken to hospital with an abdominal wound and pronounced dead at 11:00 GMT, less than four hours after the attack.

However her son was delivered by Caesarean section and "remains in a stable condition in a critical care unit", police said.

Councillor Athwal said he had asked for an "urgent meeting" with the borough commander "to discuss safety" in the Redbridge area.

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