The social media platform, Facebook,has been described by a judge as a” tool for evil.”
Declaring his judgment in a suicide case involving a 23-year-old mother who murdered herself after some people used the Facebook to accuse her of killing a baby, the judge had declared, “Social media is a powerful and effective tool and at times it is an evil tool when it is abused …”
The accusers (two women) had hacked into the Facebook account of Jayne Pearce, and posted a ‘fake confession’ on her timeline.
The fake confession reads, “I think I need sectioning, can’t believe I just tried killing a 12-week-old baby by suffocating it, feeling guilty.”
One of the women then took a screenshot of the fake confession and alerted Police who went to the house.
This led to Jayne’s arrest and she was interviewed by the Police on four occasions.
She was kept in custody for approximately 10 weeks on the attempted murder of a child.’
In the course of investigations, Police examined the women’s phones and discovered that the incriminating post was done on a phone belonging to one of Jayne’s accusers.’
The woman later admitted to posting the fake confession; but she insisted that Jayne had borrowed her device during the evening to update her (Jayne’s) own Facebook page but had forgotten to log out.
Jayne was subsequently cleared of wrongdoing and her accusers arrested, tried, and sentenced each to 10-month imprisonment. They both pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice.
However, the time Jayne spent in detention had taken its toll on her emotion, and she took to alcoholic drinks.
She was found dead in her flat, and an autopsy revealed that she had died of the complications arising from an abuse of vodka, cocaine and an anti-depressant drug.
In her judgment, the judge noted, “Social media has a great deal to answer for. It does do a great deal of good for bringing together friends who have not met each other for many years; but sadly, as is often the case now, people find it to be a tool for evil, a tool for wrong and a tool for criticising each other.
“In this case, it was a tool to bring down upon the head of an innocent person the wrath of social media by way of public opinion. Your victim was released, but only from custody.”