Social media users told by police not to post info about possible suspects of crime

Social media users told by police not to post info about possible suspects of crime

by Tom Martin (March 2021)

Police who are investigating reports that a man has been acting suspiciously around children in south Sefton have reminded social media users not to post personal information about possible suspects because it “puts potentially innocent people at risk.”

It was reported that on Tuesday 16 March a man was seen acting suspiciously, close to a group of children, in Bowersdale Park, Seaforth.  

Reports have also been made of suspicious behaviour from a man of the same description in Marine Gardens and Potters Barn Park, Waterloo.   

A number of pictures and personal information have been shared online by local people who think they know the identity of the man.

Sefton Area Commander Superintendent Graeme Robson said: "Following our appeal for information about a male behaving suspiciously in parks across south Sefton, we have confirmed the identity of a man whose image has been widely shared on social media locally. We will review all information that is provided to us and determine what action we need to take.

"Officers are aware of numerous posts on social media alleging that this man has committed criminal offences. We would like to make clear that we have not received any reports of this. We cannot take speculation on social media as a report of a crime. We fully understand concerns about community safety and would like to remind everyone that it is really important to report all information and evidence of crime directly to us so we can take action.

"We know that some of the information that has been posted, including some names, addresses and other information, has not been accurate. We would like to remind people that sharing personal information on Facebook such as names and addresses puts potentially innocent people at risk.

"We take all reports of criminal behaviour extremely seriously and we would remind people that if they have any information relating to this to tell us straight away through the appropriate channels."

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