Three British teenagers who mocked George Floyd’s death in sick online video are ARRESTED
Three British teenagers who mocked the murder of George Floyd in a Snapchat video have now been arrested on suspicion of committing a hate crime.
The trio, all from Gateshead, Tyne and Wear, caused outrage after a photo of them recreating how the unarmed 46-year-old black man died at the hands of police in Minnesota was shared on social media.
Mr Floyd was killed after police Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck for several minutes, with the death leading to riots across the US and protests at cities around the world including London, Manchester and Cardiff.
Despite the fury, the three teenagers posted the mocking Snapchat video last week, though they were forced to shut down their social media profiles after it quickly spread.
They have also reportedly started receiving death threats and are now thought to be in police protections.
Northumbria Police did not confirm this, though a spokesperson did reveal that the trio had been arrested, with the Snapchat video now being treated as a hate crime.
A police statement said: ‘We can confirm we are investigating after an image was shared on social media which showed two men imitating the recent death of US citizen George Floyd.
‘An investigation was launched and yesterday (Sunday) officers arrested two males aged 19 and another male aged 18 on suspicion of sending communications causing anxiety and distress.
‘They have since been released on bail. We understand that this social media post has caused significant upset and we want to reassure the public it is being investigated robustly and is being treated as a hate crime.’
The video was shared on a Warwick University freshers Facebook page – where it quickly drew widespread criticism.
Rumours circulated that the trio were due to go to the university in September – but a source who went to school with all three dismissed this.
The source added today: ‘It’s all blown up in their faces and they’ve received death threats.
‘They were arrested on Sunday night and have had their phones taken off them and everything.
‘It’s turned into a witch hunt and they’ve had some really nasty threats – some of which have been targeted at their families which isn’t right at all.
‘It was a sick joke but they don’t deserve to die. The police know about it and are protecting them against any vigilante attacks.’
Elesha Foord, from Lincolnshire, was outraged when she saw the post and immediately shared it on Twitter – where it quickly garnered thousands of likes, comments and retweets.
The 16-year-old student said: ‘Honestly when I first saw it I wasn’t that shocked. We’ve seen so much racial prejudice but it’s not a shock because we see this so much.
‘Everyone is rightly enraged by this. I think these guys should be known and their employers should be known and take whatever action they see fit.
‘It is a criminal offence in my view because they are making a mockery of a guy losing his life. These guys will get a second chance but George Floyd won’t.
‘Imagine being so bold as to post this on your Snapchat and not get anything back – these people need to be named and shamed.’