A gang of teenage youths who terrorised a disabled woman by pelting her with eggs and flour before posting a celebratory selfie online have been placed under police protection for their own safety.
The shocking incident occurred last week in the UK county of Suffolk and involved two 17-year-olds and three 15-year-olds. The photo and names of the boys have gone viral on social media, with many slamming the teens for their attack on the woman believed to be in her mid-40s.
The abuse and threats against the boys has gotten so bad since their photo went viral that they’ve now been placed under police protection, according to The Telegraph. Remarkably, the mother of one of the boys has now hit out at the abuse he is receiving, claiming it could ruin his upcoming 16th birthday.
Speaking exclusively to MailOnline, the boy’s mum said she can’t say anything about what occurred last weekend, other than her son’s name has been leaked over the internet and he’s received threats. She said she reported the abuse to police and they’re now under their protection. She also revealed she’s been given a direct line to call police if there are any problems at the family home.
“This isn’t what we need,” she said. “It’s my son’s 16th birthday and we’ve got family here for his party.”
Meanwhile, the father of another boy who has also be receiving death threats has been less forgiving, forcing his son to confess to his crime and telling MailOnline he’s grounded.
The viral photo showed the boys posing around the woman as she cowered on a park bench. Her body was covered in flour and raw egg.
Suffolk Police have warned people not to share photos, videos or names of the boys as it could impact the results of the case.
“This is a live investigation and we do not support vigilantism in any way, shape or form,” Acting Detective Superintendent Barry Byford said in a statement. “Social media users should remember that sharing names and images, which may later form part of a criminal investigation, can disrupt or jeopardise the case. We are satisfied that we have spoken to everyone involved with the incident and we are continuing to support the victim.”
The boys in question were released on police bail pending further enquiries but will answer police bail in mid-August.
The man who first shared the photo of the incident online, Robin Armstrong, was set to appear on British talkshow This Morning on Tuesday, but due to legal reasons, his appearance had been cancelled.
“Had a late night call due to legal reasons the interview on This Morning can’t go ahead tomorrow,” he said. “They said they’ve been on the phone to the lawyers all night trying to sort it and because the court case isn’t finished they can’t legally talk about it on TV so will be at a later date.”