Man Jailed For Abusive Online Messages

13 September 2011, 14:31 | Updated: 15 September 2011, 15:33

A man from Reading who posted abusive images to online memorials dedicated to dead children was today jailed for 18 weeks.

Sean Duffy, 25, was also banned from using social networking sites for five years after admitting posting images on Facebook and YouTube mocking the deaths of four children, including 15-year-old Natasha McBryde, who committed suicide.

Reading Magistrates' Court heard that Duffy, of Grovelands Road, Reading, posted a video on YouTube called Tasha the Tank Engine days after the teenager was found dead on a railway line near her home in Worcestershire.

The court was also told that Duffy had produced similar abusive images of Hayley Bates, Lauren Drew and Jordan Cooper.

Paul Warren, chairman of the magistrates' bench, said: "This case serves to illustrate the harm and damage done by the malicious misuse of social networking sites.''

Duffy, who the court heard suffers with alcohol problems and has Asperger's syndrome, pleaded guilty to two offences under the Malicious Communications Act in relation to Natasha.

He asked for three further offences to be taken into consideration relating to the other youngsters.