A depraved Facebook group set up to mock murdered toddler Millie Martin has been taken off the internet after concerns over its content were raised by the Belfast Telegraph.
The sickening fake tribute site, which lured in more than 350 members, was established on Tuesday hours after Barry Michael McCarney (30) appeared in court charged with sexually assaulting and killing the 15-month-old baby at her Co Fermanagh home last weekend.
Comments relating to the heinous abuse the baby allegedly suffered were posted on a page entitled ‘RIP Millie Martin’ on the popular social networking site from contributors across the world. A number of sick comments suggested baby Millie had deserved to die before launching into a sectarian tirade against the Irish.
A spokeswoman for Facebook told the Belfast Telegraph last night: “We want Facebook to be a place where people can openly discuss issues and express their views, while respecting the rights and feelings of others. This group violates our terms and so it has been removed.”
The group was open to the public. One of its administrators used the name of Vanessa George, who this week was jailed for life for a catalogue of abuse against children in her nursery care. Another administrator used the name Luciano Pavarotti. Many members who joined the group to leave genuine tributes and messages of sympathy for Millie’s grieving family were left shocked and appalled by some of the content they encountered.
Meanwhile Fermanagh/South Tyrone Assemblyman Tommy Gallagher said the community in the area was still reeling from news of the tragedy and offensive websites would do little to ease their pain.
He said: “This really is a new low in depravity and I agree entirely that this needs to be shut down. Quite clearly there are some very sick individuals in our society who are prepared to stoop to new depths.
“For all the deeds of those faceless people, the community here in Enniskillen are very sympathetic and supportive — and that will continue to be the case.”
A number of Facebook users posted messages expressing anger at the abuse directed towards baby Millie.
“I joined this thinking it was about baby Millie. To be quite frank it’s just a pile of freaks and losers who need to get a life.” Claire Lunny
“These sad cases have been reported to police and will be traced they will pay for what they have done.” Kate Dolly
“I won’t even dignify these comments with a response. I’m leaving the group and I hope Facebook takes action.” Sean P Ryan
“The people here are insincere and abusing Millie in death as she was abused in life. You are all nutters.” Bernie Courtney
“This is a fake group made by paedos and sick heads. I |recommend no-one joins it.” Karl Darcy