Katie Price says she will continue to ‘fight for what is right’ after man accused of trolling her disabled son Harvey is found not guilty after court heard he shared cruel clip as a joke
- Katie Price gives evidence during trial at Hastings Magistrates’ Court today
- Philip Lewer, 52, was arrested on suspicion of sending offensive message
- But he was found not guilty after court heard he didn’t mean to cause offence
- Price posed for photographers outside court today with her fiance Carl Wood
A man accused of trolling Katie Price’s disabled son Harvey was today found not guilty at a trial after the court heard he had shared the video clip as a joke.
The ex-model told MailOnline that the outcome at Hastings Magistrates’ Court was a ‘blow’ but insisted it ‘only drives me onwards to fight for what is right – for justice’.
The defendant, Philip Lewer, allegedly shared the video on Twitter last November after receiving it over WhatsApp – and Sussex Police arrested him ten hours later.
The 52-year-old, from Hastings, was detained on suspicion of sending an offensive, indecent, obscene or menacing message by a public communication network.
Lewer, who allegedly shared the clip after it was originally posted by another person, appeared at the court in East Sussex this morning as Price took to the witness box.
Price posed for photographers outside the building with her fiance Carl Woods as they both wore anti-trolling t-shirts
The 43-year-old will give evidence after police charged the 52-year-old man over the footage mocking Harvey
Price, 43, said: ‘This one I found absolutely disgusting, because they managed to paint the colour of their skin, clearly being racist.
‘They mimicked how he speaks and they are doing the eye movement. They are mocking me and him together. He can’t defend himself.’
The court heard Lewer had posted the video on his Twitter page after someone else made it.
The court was also told that the clip had been retweeted 46 times, quote-tweeted 369 times and liked by 107 people.
Lewer was then said to have changed his account name ‘so people could not find him’ after he received messages telling him it was ‘vile’.
But he was arrested the next day, despite telling police: ‘It’s just a tweet, a tweet. I can just delete the tweet. I was sent the link on WhatsApp.’
In a clip, a man and woman mimic the former glamour model, 42, and her 18-year-old
The clip was shared on social media in November and mocked Price and her son Harvey
Asked why he posted the video, he told the court: ‘It was the half-a***d way they went about it – she has a push-up bra and is caked in fake tan and he is blacked-up.’
He said the man who was featured in the clip was ‘playing a character badly’ and claimed the Loose Women episode it was based on would ‘go down in history’.
Lewer said people have blacked their faces ‘right through to Little Britain’ but added it had ‘been a very chastening experience’.
He told magistrates he wanted to say sorry but ‘I didn’t find it offensive. I didn’t think people would be offended’.
But Lewer was found not guilty of the charge after the court was told that he shared the clip as a ‘joke’ and did not mean to cause any offence.
Price issued a statement through her representative after the hearing, telling MailOnline: ‘Firstly I would like to thank Sussex Police for their hard work and efforts in bringing unacceptable online abuse to the court room today.
Price told MailOnline today that the outcome at Hastings Magistrates’ Court was a ‘blow’ but insisted it ‘only drives me onwards to fight for what is right – for justice’
‘It is unheard of for a stranger to walk down the street hurling racial or similar abuse at a complete stranger.
‘The government needs to take urgent action to stop these faceless keyboard warriors from emotionally harming innocent and vulnerable people from the safety and comfort of their own home.
‘Trolling and online abuse is unacceptable, Harvey’s Law and Track a Troll are steps towards the much needed regulation of online behaviour.
‘I hope that today’s case has shone a spot light on the issues that need urgently addressing.’
She added: ‘Today’s outcome was indeed a blow and only drives me onwards to fight for what is right – for justice.’
Price, who heads the Track A Troll campaign against anonymous accounts, quickly took to social media to find the culprit
Earlier, Price took to social media and shared a shot of her travelling on the way to the court this morning.
She also posed for photographers outside the building with her fiance Carl Woods as they both wore anti-trolling t-shirts.
The clip was shared on social media in November and mocked Price and her son Harvey.
A woman, who appeared to be playing Price, said: ‘If someone says something horrible to Harvey, what do we say?’
A man, who was wearing blackface, replied: ‘Hello you c***s.’
Price, who heads the Track A Troll campaign against anonymous accounts, quickly took to social media to find the culprit.
She wrote: ‘I’ve been sent this disgusting, racist mockery-taking video about me and Harvey mocking his disabilities, clearly planned hence the face-painting (sic).
‘Does anybody know these disgusting humans as I will be reporting to the police #Harvey’sLaw.
‘Words cannot describe how upset I am, this is so cruel. These people need reporting.’
Last year Price sat down with MPs to talk about the internet trolling her son Harvey – who has Prader-Willi syndrome – faces.
She has called for ‘Harvey’s Law’, which is to make social media abuse a specific offence with a register to catalogue offenders.
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