Paris Brown’s lawyers criticise Kent police
PUBLISHED: 13:43 22 April 2013 | UPDATED: 13:43 22 April 2013
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Paris Brown’s lawyers have said she should never have been the subject of a police investigation after it was announced Britain’s first youth police and crime commissioner would face no further action for her controversial tweets.
Miss Brown, from Sheerness, was forced to step down earlier this month over offensive comments she made on Twitter, just days after being appointed to the £15,000-a-year job.
A statement from law firm Olswang, representing the 17-year-old, said Kent police had given a “wholly disproportionate response.”
It said: “We are unsurprised by the decision that no further action is warranted. We would regard this as inevitable, given that it was obvious that no criminal offence was committed.
“Paris and her family are pleased this matter has been brought to a close. She has had a difficult time recently, in part due to the media and inappropriate police scrutiny.”
After being appointed by Kent Crime Commissioner Ann Barnes, who was to pay £5,000 of her salary, it emerged that Miss Brown had posted racist and homophobic tweets between the ages of 14 and 16, while also talking about taking drugs and underage drinking.
A spokeswoman for Kent police said: “Whilst some of the language used is offensive, particularly the comments which derogatorily refer to particular social groups, we do not believe that in the context they are grossly offensive on a reasonable objective assessment considering intent.
“We have spoken to the Crown Prosecution Service about our findings, and given them our view that this case does not pass the evidential threshold for prosecution.”
Officers question Miss Brown after they received more than 50 complaints from members of the public.
A new youth crime commissioner will be appointed by Mrs Barnes later this year but she admitted there are “lessons to be learned” from Miss Brown’s recruitment process, which did not including checking the teenager’s social media history.