First, ‘Gollygate’ came to a screeching halt:
Chris McCann, head of the complex casework unit at the East of England Crown Prosecution Service, said a “review has been carried out at the highest level“.He said: “To establish that an offence has been committed, it would have been necessary to prove that Jena Mason was the person who placed the doll in such a prominent position likely to cause her neighbours racially-aggravated harassment, alarm or distress.
“On the evidence available, it is not possible to show exactly who was responsible for placing the doll in the window.
“Despite further inquiry and review, we have determined that the evidence is insufficient and there is not a realistic prospect of conviction.”
Although as Bucko points out, this is pretty mealy-mouthed and you get no sense whatsoever that they wouldn’t have ploughed ahead regardless if they’d only had a sliver of evidence.
And then, on Monday, my Twitter timeline filled up with the hashtag #RIPStuartWalker as a result of the initial reports of the horrific death by burning alive of a man ‘just because he was gay’.
Which is somehow worse than, well, burning a man alive because he looked at you (or your bird) funny, or owed you money, or you just felt like killing someone…
Unfortunately, it seems as if the outrage was misplaced:
It was reported yesterday that the attack on the barman may have been motivated by homophobia but detectives said they were keeping an open mind – and were convinced his death was not a random attack.
Not that this stopped the ‘Indy’ from heading this report ‘Was This The UK’s Worst Anti-Gay Hate Crime?’, of course.
Furthermore, he wasn’t even burned alive:
Det Insp John Hogg, leading the inquiry, said police were not aware of Mr Walker’s identity when his body was found on Saturday morning. he had not been tied to a lamppost, as initially suggested.
A missing person’s report had been filed after he had failed to turn up at work and to a family engagement, leading to his being identified.
A post mortem examination has also confirmed that while Mr Walker was subjected to burns he had died from other injuries, which are not being disclosed.
So Tuesday’s timeline was rather free of comparisons to the Holocaust, exhortations to remember Pastor Neimoller’s words, and other spurious calls for action from the professional grievance-mongers…