Viral online comment ‘could be construed as a hate crime’, Terrace RCMP investigating

A screenshot of the comment, which is derogatory towards First Nations, has been shared thousands of times on social media

Terrace RCMP are investigating an online comment that is being called “a hate crime” by many who have read it.

The comment, which makes derogatory comments about First Nations, appeared briefly through a posting by a Facebook user called Howie Boake to an online Terrace Standard article Jan. 27 before it was removed by blocking software.

Before the comment was blocked, however, a screenshot of the comment was captured and that image has been shared widely on social media.

“As you can imagine, a statement like this on social media garners a lot of attention and we have had numerous reports,” said Const. Angela Rabut of the Terrace RCMP detachment.

She said the detachment has received about half a dozen reports on the comment – some through other detachments, like the Surrey office, which fielded a report from a person in Saskatchewan.

“Social media really shrinks the world,” she said.

The comment “is so low it deserves no response,” Rabut added, but instead it has spread and bred more negativity “like a bad virus.”

Rabut could not confirm if police had spoken with the poster, pointing to the active investigation, but did say a fair amount of staff time was being spent following up on the online comments.

“Anything to do with social media usually takes up a fair amount of time because there’s lots of comments made, people make comments very easily online and we do need to follow up,” Rabut said.

More than 100 people have commented on a separate comment publicly visible on the Facebook page registered to Boake which posted the original comment, with many constituting the screenshot comment from Jan. 27 was a hate crime.

“In reading those comments it could be construed as a hate crime,” said Rabut of the Jan. 27 comment. “But as the investigation unfolds we’ll make those decisions.

“Our number one priority is public safety, so that’s the biggest thing we’re going to be looking at here, to ensure that the public is safe, and then going from there,” she said, noting that that includes the safety of the poster, who has had a number of threatening comments directed his way online.

Just Posted

College buys a yurt to boost student success

Round tent-like structure part of college instructional shift

Soup kitchen sees “groundswell of community support”

Donations toward looming tax bill push non-profit back in the black

Terrace husband and wife honoured for saving each other’s lives

BC Ambulance presented each a Vital Link Award for separate incidents of CPR

Council supports lobby for fair share of cannabis tax revenue

The City of Terrace is throwing its support behind a West Kelowna… Continue reading

Airport registers modest passenger increase

Manager anticipates further growth in 2018 as expansion project nears completion

Airport registers modest passenger increase

Manager anticipates further growth in 2018 as expansion project nears completion

B.C. woman who forged husband’s will gets house arrest

Princeton Judge says Odelle Simmons did not benefit from her crime

Women’s movement has come a long way since march on Washington: Activists

Vancouver one of several cities hosting event on anniversary of historic Women’s March on Washington

Liberals’ 2-year infrastructure plan set to take 5: documents

Government says 793 projects totalling $1.8 billion in federal funds have been granted extensions

Workers shouldn’t be used as ‘pawns’ in minimum wage fight: Wynne

Comments from Kathleen Wynne after demonstrators rallied outside Tim Hortons locations across Canada

John ‘Chick’ Webster, believed to be oldest living former NHL player, dies

Webster died Thursday at his home in Mattawa, Ont., where he had resided since 1969

World’s fastest log car made in B.C. sells for $350,000 US

Cedar Rocket auctioned off three times at Barrett-Jackson Co., netting $350,000 US for veterans

Bad timing: Shutdown spoils Trump’s one-year festivities

Trump spends day trying to hash out a deal with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer

RCMP nail alleged sex toy thief

Shop owner plays a role in arrest

Most Read