UPDATE: Peter Nunn has been jailed for 18 weeks and has two restraining orders in place preventing him from contacting Caroline Criado-Perez and Stella Creazy. I am quite disappointed as I had hoped he would receive a longer jail sentence to reflect the severity of his crime. I also think we should institute immediate temporary restraining orders during the investigation and trial of harassment and stalking, which can be reviewed upon completion of the trial with mandatory extensions following conviction as Nunn continued to create twitter accounts to abuse Criado-Perez and Creazy following his arrest.
Criado-Perez has written a brief statement on Nunn’s sentencing here.
Peter Nunn is not an internet “troll”. He is a violent and abusive man who sent abusive messages and rape threats to multiple women, although his conviction today was only for his campaign against Caroline Criado-Perez and Stella Creazy. Nunn’s account was suspended by Twitter following his abuse of multiple women. He then set up multiple accounts continuing the abuse, many of which were also suspended.
Nunn’s tweets were not “jokes” – and any suggestion that sending rape threats and suggesting women in the public sphere deserve the abuse – is misogyny. Nunn is a misogynist. Those who defend his actions as “free speech” or the fault of his wife for “nagging” (as suggested on twitter today) or because he was “drunk” are perpetuating misogyny. Nunn is the ONLY person responsible for the crimes he committed – and sending threats of rape, physical violence or death to individuals is not protected by free speech (especially as we live in the UK where free speech isn’t a part of British law).
Nunn is just like every other abusive, controlling. misogynistic man. He thought he could say whatever he wanted to women without being held at all accountable for his actions. Just like every other man who commits violence against women and children: from those sharing the images of Jennifer Lawrence to men who commit domestic violence to those who think it’s acceptable to ‘catcall’ women in the streets.
Excusing Nunn or using words like “troll” to define his behaviour minimises the crime and the harm committed by Nunn. Trolls are pathetic little dickheads who think it’s funny to use demeaning language about women – Nunn was deliberately and maliciously causing harm by sending rape and death threats. He isn’t pathetic – he’s a dangerous man who deserves a custodial sentence.
We need to stop referring to men who send rape and death threats as trolls and start recognising them as the abusive dangerous men they are.