Teenager found guilty of sending offensive Instagram post

The teenager’s defence that her Instagram profile 'wasn't public' had been proved wrong in court

The teenager’s defence that her Instagram profile 'wasn't public' had been proved wrong in court

Friday, April 20, 2018

A teenager from Liverpool has been found guilty of sending a grossly offensive message after posting racist rap lyrics on Instagram.

Merseyside Police were anonymously sent a screenshot of 19-year-old Chelsea Russell’s update, which was received by hate crime unit PC Dominique Walker.

PC Walker told the court the term Russell had used was "grossly offensive" to her as a black woman and to the general community.

Russell’s post featured lyrics from Snap Dogg's I'm Trippin' to pay tribute to a 13-year-old boy who had died in a road crash in 2017, a court heard.

The teenager’s defence that her Instagram profile "wasn't public" had been proved wrong in court, and anyone could access it and "see the offensive language", prosecutor Angela Conlan said.

She said prosecutors also "sourced case law that showed that posting the profile on her account constituted sending it and making it public".

The Liverpool Echo reported that Russell's defence had argued the usage of the word had changed over time and it had been used by superstar rapper Jay-Z "in front of thousands of people at the Glastonbury Festival".

Russell has been given an eight-week community order, placed on an eight-week curfew and told to pay costs of £500 and an £85 victim surcharge.

Prosecutors said her sentence was increased from a fine to a community order "as it was a hate crime".

Comments