Search

Camden police to launch crackdown on internet ‘trolls’

08:00 23 May 2014

Ch Supt Ben-Julian "BJ" Harrington. Picture: Polly Hancock

Ch Supt Ben-Julian "BJ" Harrington. Picture: Polly Hancock

Archant

Every Camden police officer is to be trained in tackling online abuse – because senior crime chiefs believe internet “trolling” is equal to making threats on the street or in a bar.

Officers across the borough are to be tutored in handling abuse on social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook during lessons starting in July.

Camden’s Borough Commander, Ch Supt Ben-Julian Harrington, told the Ham&High that he has decided to make these “lower rent cyber crimes” a priority over the next year.

“Twitter abuse is going to be a real focus,” he said. “If I walked into a pub and started shouting abuse at you and kept doing it, you would expect cops to turn up.

“Making threats to someone on Twitter is just like making threats to someone walking along the street. If they keep doing it then that’s a crime and we’ll tackle it.”

The pledge comes four months after two people were jailed for abusing Camden-based journalist and feminist campaigner Caroline Criado-Perez over Twitter, in one of the most high-profile cases of what is often called “trolling”.

It was initially investigated by officers in Camden and led to a man and a woman from the north east of England receiving jail terms of eight and 12 weeks in January.

Both had bombarded Ms Criado-Perez with abusive comments over her campaign for a woman to appear on bank notes.

The police training should equip Camden’s police with key technical skills, including the ability to record online posts that can be deleted.

It will also help officers to recognise when internet messages become criminal and warrant police intervention.

Ch Supt Harrington said cases of children sending abusive posts to each other are likely to be the 
responsibilty of schools.

He said: “I want my officers to be just as confident at recognising crimes in the cyber world.”

Police said there were just over 200 crime reports in Camden relating to Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites in each of the past two financial years, though the figures are provisional.

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

56 minutes ago
Neighbours are

Neighbours in Gospel Oak say they are “still friends” after publicly airing their difference of opinion over the Brexit question.

An artist's impression of the cycling superhighway in Avenue Road

Camden Council has called on Transport for London (TfL) to conduct further traffic modelling for the propsed Cycle-Superhighway (CS11) scheme to take account of the likely impact of High Speed Rail (HS2).

Yesterday, 18:54
The Old White Bear pub in Hampstead

Developers who own the derelict Old White Bear pub in Hampstead have been ordered to take down scaffolding at the historic building by the end of the week or face enforcement action by Camden Council.

Tue, 17:41
Tributes have been paid to actor Burt Kwouk

Tributes have been paid to renowned Hampstead actor Burt Kwouk, famous for his role in the Pink Panther films.

Tue, 17:15
Tom Franklin, former chair of the Camden Green Party, pictured with Sian Berry and other supporters outside court

Eight protesters cleared of any wrongdoing for their part in an arms fair protest will not face a retrial after a judge refused an appeal lodged by the Crown.

Tue, 16:18
The Ratclliffe family when Gabriella was one week old

The husband of a West Hampstead mum who has been held for 50 days in Iran without charge has hit out at the government for not doing enough to secure her release.

Tue, 14:04
Heather Brett, with her mother, Nora

A daughter is urging hospitals to prioritise dementia care after her 90-year-old mother had a “traumatic” experience at the Whittington.

Mon, 17:50
Left to Right: Artist Dom Pattinson, Zebra One gallery owner Gabrielle du Plooy, actor  Phil Daniels and Blur's Dave Rowntree with artwork for auction at the Star Boot Sale

A fan has bid £6,500 on an outfit worn by former Spice girl Melanie Chisholm, which was among celebrity cast-offs being sold off at the Star Boot Sale on Sunday.

PROMOTED CONTENT

There are no rules when it comes to buying studio pottery beyond choosing what you love

With The Great Pottery Throwdown captivating viewers across the nation, pottery courses at capacity, and hipsters snapping up vintage studio pieces to display their succulents in and post on Instagram, studio pottery and ceramics are definitely having a moment.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Win a BMW 1 series

There are fewer cars currently on the market more stylish and exciting than the BMW. Known all over the world as one of the best car manufacturers, the BMW is renowned for sleek designs and fantastic high quality workmanship.

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe