|Joined: 09 Apr 2010|
| Posted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:27 pm
I dont like over the top politically correct people, but with the way the internet has consumed the planet its good to see idiots like Liam Stacy (below) get whats coming, even if he is being made an excample out of, maybe, hopefully it will stop others from acting like such a troll when bad things happen.
A Welsh student who mocked soccer star Fabrice Muamba on Twitter after he collapsed with a heart attack lost his appeal against a 56-day jail term today.
Liam Stacey (21) of Pontypridd, south Wales, sobbed as he was taken away following the failed sentence appeal hearing at Swansea Crown Court.
Mr Justice Wyn Williams told him he rejected an argument that Stacey had already been punished enough.
He said the Swansea University biology student had admitted an offence, racially aggravated public disorder, of intent.
“He was intending to say what he said and was intending to produce the effect that he did.”
He heard the appeal today with two magistrates from the court where the original sentence was imposed last Tuesday.
After listening to arguments from both sides, he adjourned for 30 minutes to reach a conclusion.
He returned more than 90 minutes later and immediately apologised for the delay.
“You will all understand that this is a very emotive and very difficult case and we wanted to be sure in our minds that what we were doing was right,” he said.
He went on to highlight a penalty notice that Stacey received in March last year for violent disorder.
The incident had previously been overlooked and was not mentioned at Stacey’s earlier sentencing.
It was triggered by a drunken Stacey becoming violent as he was ejected from a pub, which caused the police to be called.
He went on to threaten and swear at the officers who arrived on the scene and was eventually arrested for a public order offence.
Earlier Paul Hobson, for Stacey, who had been unaware of the offence, set out why the student should be freed.
He spoke of the effect that the case had already had on his family and friends and argued that a suspended sentence or a community order would be appropriate.
“What he did on that particular night was vile,” he began.
“But I would submit that the court can conclude that, vile though his actions were, he is not a vile person.
“What he did does not define his whole personality, but it will be a blot on his character forever.”
He added: “Very rarely will a court deal with an individual who has attracted so much stigma.”
He said the stigma had affected his family and friends, who were guilty of nothing.
A fortnight ago Stacey was a “normal student at the local university. Unknown to anyone outside family and friends”.
“In short, he had a very bright future in prospect,” he said.
In contrast, now he has a criminal conviction and his academic future is “in the air” with a university disciplinary hearing next month.
“He is now three days into a prison sentence and, probably worse than all of that, he has managed to achieve a notoriety and perhaps pariah status.”
Stacey was taken away in tears after being sentenced to 56 days in prison for admitting a racially aggravated public order offence.
He sobbed uncontrollably as a female security guard led him away in handcuffs at Swansea Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.
Since then he has spent three days in jail as the debate over whether his punishment was too harsh has raged.
The Swansea University biology undergraduate triggered revulsion when he posted “LOL (laugh out loud). F*** Muamba. He’s dead!!!”
The tweet was posted while doctors fought to save Muamba’s life and his plight was touching hearts around the world.
The Bolton Wanderers midfielder suffered a heart attack during an early evening FA Cup tie against Tottenham Hotspur on March 17th.
Millions watched the match live on TV and were horrified when the soccer star collapsed from what many feared initially was a fatal attack.
While prayers were being said for Muamba worldwide, a drunken Stacey turned to his BlackBerry to post his now infamous tweet.
When that message attracted a barrage of criticism he replied with a vile series of racist torrents.
Support for the jail term was widespread on the day it was handed down, and was subsequently widely debated on Twitter.
But a significant minority criticised his punishment and claimed it was politically motivated to make him into an example.