As the trolls who sent abusive messages to Caroline Criado-Perez and Stella Creasy MP are jailed today, a fact comes to light in Judge Howard Riddell’s judgement against Isabella Sorley I was not aware of. She has 25 previous offences recorded against her for drunk and disorderly behaviour, and says she was drunk at least for some of the time when she was sending abusive tweets.
Here’s some of what the judge said:
Ms Sorley, you were recently assessed as unsuitable for an Alcohol Treatment Requirement as you lack the necessary motivation… you are an intelligent and well educated woman. You have a 2(1) degree in Creative Advertising. To your credit you have mostly remained in work, even though you were unable to find employment in your chosen field. In addition you have real support from your family, for whom this has been a very harrowing time. Mr Caulfield has emphasised to me the disconnect between the pleasant and articulate person he has seen, and the person your record demonstrates. He points out these offences occurred in a 30 minute window well after midnight when you must have been heavily under the influence of alcohol. I accept that. However you have offended so many times when drunk that it must have been obvious to you that you needed to deal with this problem if you were not to continue to cause harm to others. His full sentencing report is here Judgement: Nimmo and Sorley
This suggests that alcohol has contributed to the harm not only suffered by Caroline Criado-Perez and Stella Creasy, but also by Isabella Sorley, who tonight will spend her first night of many in jail. She’s not the only woman with a drink problem to do so. I’m not arguing that Isabella Sorley was not responsible for her actions – certainly in the eyes of the law she was. I am however pointing out that the harmful effects of alcohol are everywhere. You only have to look a little deeper.