No more fresher tweets, cop told

PCSO who tweeted during Freshers’ Week forced to take account offline

A police officer has been told not to use Twitter again after a stream of tweets on policing students during Freshers’ Week triggered complaints from the Students’ Guild.

The @TopshamPolice account, run by community support officer Sarah Giles, used the hashtag #exeterfreshers to spread information during the week.

She tweeted comments such as “back to shepherd students” and “Mr ‘you need a warrant to search me, bitches’ best be on better behaviour”.

The offending account

In a statement, the Guild said: “We recently put forward concerns that the tone and content of some tweets from the @TopshamPolice Twitter account were not reflective of the views of the rest of the local Police.

“We work very closely with the Police and firmly believe this is an internal issue for them to deal with.”

The officer’s last tweet read: “Thank you all for following and banter over the last year – I have been instructed to cease tweeting. My apologies.”

This was followed up a day ago by a Tweet saying the decision “upset me very much and is still being discussed.”

Gordon Scobbie, who speaks for police on social media, said “There is a fine balance to be struck. People who make mistakes should be supported [or] we are in danger of looking heavy-handed.”