Woman put lewd pics of part­ner’s ex on in­sta­gram


Manchester Evening News - - NEWS - By AMY WALKER

A JEAL­OUS girl­friend shamed her part­ner’s ex by post­ing lewd pic­tures of her on In­sta­gram, leav­ing the vic­tim sui­ci­dal, a court heard.

Cloth­ing boss Rachel Dale, 28, had dis­cov­ered the graphic im­ages on her part­ner’s phone on the day of her birth­day – and then shared them with her 2,000 fol­low­ers, hav­ing warned the vic­tim: “They will be all over the in­ter­net to­mor­row”.

Al­though she deleted the pic­tures from her page af­ter just eight min­utes, they had al­ready been cir­cu­lated on so­cial me­dia fo­rums and in­ter­net cha­t­rooms.

The un­named vic­tim was so dev­as­tated by the dis­clo­sure she tried to take her own life and was treated in hospi­tal be­fore be­ing al­lowed home.

At Tame­side mag­is­trates court, Dale, of Staly­bridge, wept as she ad­mit­ted an of­fence of dis­clos­ing a pri­vate sex­ual pho­to­graph with in­tent to cause dis­tress un­der ‘Re­venge Porn laws.’

But she walked free with a sus­pended jail term af­ter she claimed the of­fence oc­curred af­ter she had been made re­dun­dant from an­other cloth­ing firm where she had been a re­tail buyer.

The court heard that Ms Dale’s boyfriend had a brief af­fair with the vic­tim – sev­eral years ago, be­fore he met Dale – and that she sent var­i­ous ex­plicit pic­tures of her­self to him.

The woman had asked him to delete the im­ages just a day af­ter she sent them but the court heard the ex­plicit pic­tures re­mained on his phone.

Pros­e­cu­tor Ash­ley See­tal told JPs: “In Oc­to­ber this year, the de­fen­dant finds th­ese pic­tures of the vic­tim on (her boyfriend’s) phone be­fore up­load­ing them to In­sta­gram, a pop­u­lar so­cial me­dia site.

“The In­sta­gram ac­count which the im­ages were up­loaded on was a joint In­sta­gram ac­count used by the de­fen­dant and (her boyfriend). This had been set up and was used to pro­mote the busi­ness which they worked to­gether on.

“The ac­count had 2,000 fol­low­ers. Th­ese pic­tures were up­loaded and made pub­lic, this means that the im­ages can be seen by all 2,000 fol­low­ers.

“Prior to up­load­ing the im­ages to In­sta­gram, the de­fen­dant sent the vic­tim a mes­sage and in that mes­sage she al­luded to post­ing the pic­tures on­line and in one mes­sage she said: ‘They will be all over the in­ter­net to­mor­row.’

“The im­ages be­ing up­loaded of a graphic and in­ti­mate area, were shared to a num­ber of group chats and so­cial me­dia chats.

“The vic­tim did at­tempt to take her own life, this was a se­ri­ous at­tempt and she was taken to hospi­tal and re­ceived treat­ment. The im­ages when posted onto In­sta­gram, the pop­u­lar so­cial me­dia site, were view­able to a num­ber of fol­low­ers and the wider pub­lic. There is ev­i­dence of se­ri­ous dis­tress and se­ri­ous sig­nif­i­cant psy­cho­log­i­cal harm.”

A pro­ba­tion re­port read to the court said Dale ‘ac­cepts full re­spon­si­bil­ity’ and has ‘said if she could turn back the clock she would.’ She claimed to have been suf­fer­ing from anx­i­ety at the time – hav­ing been made re­dun­dant days ear­lier.

“She has not told her fam­ily in fear of their re­ac­tion. She has got a sta­ble lifestyle. She has con­cerns, she is not sure if the re­la­tion­ship will con­tinue long-term. She still has to work things out with the busi­ness,” the re­port said.

“Whilst the vic­tim had slept with her boyfriend, this hadn’t pre­vi­ously played on the mind of the de­fen­dant and the two par­ties have lit­tle to do with each other and were at an am­i­ca­ble level.

“But she went out cel­e­brat­ing the night be­fore as it was her birth­day and on find­ing the photo on the phone, she says she acted on im­pulse with in­tent of seek­ing re­venge. She said she was quite dis­tressed and said ‘there were no other op­tions at the time.’”

In mit­i­ga­tion, Dale’s de­fence lawyer Gavin Clarke said: “This of­fence is some­thing she gen­uinely re­grets. She is aware of the im­pact this has had on the vic­tim in this mat­ter. It was up­set­ting and there are trust is­sues. She re­acted there and then.”

Dale was sen­tenced to 12 weeks’ jail, sus­pended for a year, and was or­dered to pay £200 in costs and sur­charges.

Rachel Dale was given a sus­pended jail sen­tence

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