The Body Of Another Young Woman Has Been Found In Melbourne. Her Name Was Aya Masarwe
Everyone has the right to get home safely.
Yesterday, the body of a young woman was found in Melbourne. Police are investigating, but say it appears she was assaulted on her way home from a comedy show on Tuesday night. Her name was Aya Masarwe*, and she was 21.
Masarwe’s body was discovered by passers by in the Melbourne suburb of Bundoora on Wednesday morning, and police appealed for information from anyone who was in the area between 11pm on Tuesday night and 1am on Wednesday morning. “It seems that the female has been assaulted, and that’s really all I’m prepared to say at this time,” homicide squad Detective Inspector Andrew Stamper told media at the time.
Detectives are appealing for information following the discovery of a body in Bundoora.
Investigators are keen to speak to anyone who was in the vicinity of Main Drive and Plenty Road between 11pm last night and 1am this morning.
— Victoria Police (@VictoriaPolice) January 16, 2019
The body was identified as Aya Masarwe by an Israeli newspaper this morning (Masarwe was a university student on exchange in Australia). Her uncle, who lives in the US, told the ABC that he was shocked to learn of his niece’s death, saying that “we cannot believe that something like this happened in Australia, we think it’s very safe there.”
Masarwe’s death comes less than a year after 22-year-old Melbourne woman Eurydice Dixon was raped and murdered on her way home from a comedy show.
Thousands of people attended a vigil in Dixon’s memory, and expressed anger and frustration with a police response that called for women to take more care when walking at note. “We are members of the community,” organisers of the vigil wrote at the time. “We should be able to get home safely and not need to think before we cross a dark park.”
Remember her name. Remember her like you remember Eurydice and Jill. This young woman was on her way home after a comedy show on Tuesday night in Melbourne but instead homicide detectives suspect she was stalked, sexually assaulted and killed.
— Bridget Hustwaite (@BHustwaite) January 17, 2019
Tributes for Masarwe are pouring out online, and Bundoora residents are placing flowers and tributes at the site where her body was found.
The fact is, I don’t feel safe in my city. I don’t feel safe going to do my job at comedy gigs. I don’t run in the park anymore. This beautiful young woman didn’t deserve such a senseless act of violence.
I’m so sorry, Aya Masarwe. You deserved better of us. https://t.co/xgCCn7JDXb
— Jess Perkins (@jess_perkins) January 17, 2019
Bringing this back because this shit needs to be said again and again. Aya Masarwe. Remember her name. https://t.co/6MsIo425lI
— Jo Bradley (@JoLucyBradley) January 17, 2019
— James Hancock (@jameshancockABC) January 17, 2019
Yesterday, Melbourne student Aya Masarwe was stalked and killed while taking public transport home. Men pissed off about being asked to be decent humans in the #GilletteAd, you can keep whingeing. The rest of us will be out here burying our dead.
— Kate van Hooft (@vanhooftwrites) January 17, 2019
Victoria Police are still calling for information from anyone who rode the 86 tram route near Bundoora on Tuesday night. They have also released images of a cap and t-shirt left near Masarwe’s body, and CCTV footage of Masarwe from the night of her death. The police urge anyone who may have information about her death to contact Crime Stoppers.
UPDATE: @VictoriaPolice has released images of a t-shirt and cap left at the scene 21yo Aya Masarwe was killed in Bundoora.
They've also released CCTV images showing the clothing she wore that night, in the hope someone saw her. Anyone with info should contact @CrimeStopperVic pic.twitter.com/8dDgdrTUN2
— ABC Melbourne (@abcmelbourne) January 17, 2019
*Update: when we first published this story, media were reporting that the victim’s name was Aya Masarwe. Since then, the spelling has been corrected to Aiia Maasarwe, which is the spelling we will use in stories going forward.
Feature image via Facebook