MP Praises Role Of Social Media In 'My Tram Experience' Arrest
The arrest of a woman allegedly filmed racially abusing black tram passengers shows the power of social media, MPs have been told.
Conservative Gavin Barwell said YouTube footage of a young mother apparently launching a verbal assault on commuters demonstrated how the internet could be used to help solve crime.
A shocked passenger on the Croydon to Wimbledon Tramlink route apparently filmed the tirade and uploaded the clip as My Tram Experience on to the video-sharing website, sparking a police investigation after it was viewed by tens of thousands of people.
Mr Barwell, who represents the Croydon constituency, criticised the "most foul, racist language" used during the rant.
But he added: "On a positive note, does this not show the power of social media both in allowing a suspect to be caught and in showing the vast majority of Croydon residents do not share these views?"
Speaking as MPs discussed future Commons business, he called for a debate on "how the evil of racism in our society can finally be eradicated".
Leader of the House Sir George Young said: "It would be quite wrong if people could not travel on public transport if they were worried about being the subject of the sort of abuse you have referred to.
"I believe the penalties we have to deal with hate crimes are serious penalties and I very much hope they will be used if the offences justify them."
A woman has appeared at Croydon Magistrates' Court and been remanded in custody until December 6.