Police have been informed after vile images, including one of a dead baby, have been posted on a local Facebook site by internet trolls.
The site, ’Buy, Swap and Sell in the Coleraine area’, invites users to post items they have for sale. It has over 15,000 members. A number of members took action last week, reporting the site to Facebook, after the upsetting images appeared on the page.
Police in Coleraine yesterday confirmed that they have been contacted by a number of local Facebook users, who were concerned about the site’s content.
They have formally reported the site to Facebook.
Coleraine woman, Grainne Whyte was devastated when a picture of her little son, just hours old, was posted on the site at the weekend.
The unknown person who posted the image poked fun at the baby’s appearance, saying that he looked like a baby who had Down’s Syndrome.
Grainne told The Times: “I am just sick to the stomach thinking that someone could take pictures from my own personal page and use them in such a way. I have my security settings set correctly, so I don’t understand how they got hold of the images.
“My son has learning difficulties, he cannot stand up for himself, so I felt I needed to speak out about this - if even only to warn others. It is internet bullying and harassment.”
Another Portrush woman said:“I was really disturbed by an image of a dead baby beside a white bucket. The person who posted the image was actually advertising the bucket as an item for sale. I don’t know what sort of kick these people get out of this.”
PSNI Sergeant Robert Ennis said: “Social media users are personally responsible for the content they post and there can be both criminal and civil law implications to posting comments online.
“Where a report is made to police of possible criminal offences officers will always investigate and where evidence exists prosecutions will be sought. We have made reports to Facebook in this instance. “
I would also urge people who use social media to have a look at their privacy settings.”