Woman, 27, stabbed in back close to scene where Zara Aleena was killedWoman, 27, stabbed in back close to scene where Zara Aleena was killed

Police have released CCTV images of a cyclist suspected of stabbing a 27-year-old woman in the back before riding off on his bike.

The woman was attacked in St John’s Road, Ilford, London on Friday around 8pm, just two weeks after the murder of Zara Aleena, who was brutally attacked and killed in Ilford while walking home in the early hours of the morning.

The victim of Friday’s stabbing was taken to hospital and her injuries were not life-threatening or life-changing.

In a CCTV image released by police, the suspect is seen wearing black clothes and a white and black bicycle helmet, carrying a black bag and riding a distinctive green bicycle.

Chief Inspector Chris Byrne of the Metropolitan police said: “I know that this attack on a woman, coming so soon after the tragic murder of Zara Aleena, will be of great concern to Londoners and particularly to people in Ilford.

“Of course, my colleagues and I share those concerns and we are working hard to do everything possible to keep people safe.

“The woman was attacked by a male riding a bicycle, who rode away in the direction of Meads Lane, Ilford.

“Anyone who recognises the person in the images circulated is urged to call police immediately.”

The image shows the suspect in Meads Lane around the time of the attack.

Local people will have seen more police officers in the Ilford area since Zara Aleena’s murder.

Mr Byrne said: “We have deployed additional resources to the local area including officers who specialise in tackling violent crime.

“We will continue to adjust our plans to ensure that officers are visible and available to support the community this weekend and in subsequent days.

“If you have any concerns or information, please do speak with those officers.”

Zara Aleena, 35, died from head and neck injuries.

She was attacked in the early hours of Sunday June 26 as she walked home from a night out along Cranbrook Road, an area she knew well and where family said she felt “safe”.

Jordan McSweeney, 29, of Church Elm Lane, Dagenham, east London, has appeared at the Old Bailey accused of murder, attempted rape and robbery.

He entered no pleas and was remanded in custody until September 30.