Published: 09:51, 21 June 2012
by Rachel Hovenden
A pregnant woman who suffered the loss of a baby has spoken of her shock after being harassed by cruel trolls on a Dead Baby Jokes Facebook page.
Jessamy O'Neill, 22, lost her baby Sara a year and a half ago to the rare chromosome disorder triploidy when she was 24 weeks pregnant.
The majority of babies with triploidy die during pregnancy or shortly after birth.
Miss O’Neill, of Broomfield Road, Swanscombe, said when she learned of the Facebook group’s existence it made her shake with anger.
She decided to write on the page’s wall and admits at first her language was strong, but said she was in shock.
She then wrote: "Me and my family had to go through the pain, hurt, & turmoil of burying mine & my partner’s daughter & was the most painful thing we have ever done.
"I’m shaking so much through your nasty, evil, so-called jokes."
The response to her comments on the page - which has almost 21,000 'likes' - was sickening.
Michael Pinedo wrote: "Did it taste delicious?" and in another post: "Did you dress it up in a clown suit?"
Then Rachael Walker wrote: "I bet she deep-fried it. They’re scrumptious when they’re all crispy."
"i’m shaking so much through your nasty, evil, so-called jokes…” – what jessamy o'neil told facebook abusers
One comment Miss O’Neill found particularly shocking was about Down’s syndrome, because triploidy has similarities to the condition.
Rachael Walker wrote: "I think this is some strange thing called ‘Down Syndrome’… Just ignore them and their potato ways."
Miss O’Neill, who is expecting a baby again, said: "It is really sickening to see people write stuff like that.
"My daughter passed away. We had to have her heartbeat stopped because she would either have died before birth or during the birth and we didn’t want to put her through that.
"I think the site is sickening, people shouldn’t be allowed to write things like that. I have asked Facebook to shut it down.
"It’s heart wrenching to go through what I did. To see the site – I was sick with anger."
The Facebook page where Jessamy O'Neill was taunted
A Facebook spokesman said: "We take our Statement of Rights and Responsibilities very seriously and react quickly to remove reported content that violates our policies.
"Specifically, we’re sensitive to content that includes pornography, bullying, hate speech, and actionable threats of violence.
"The goal of these policies is to strike a very delicate balance between giving people the freedom to express themselves and maintaining a safe and trusted environment.
"In general, groups devoted to jokes, even disgusting and distasteful ones, do not violate our policies. Where these groups make real threats or statements of hate, however, we will remove them. We encourage people to report anything they feel violates our policies using the report links located throughout the site.
"Specifically, dead baby jokes groups and pages in general do not violate our Statement of Rights and Responsibilities.
"However, should there be any specific images believed to display children at risk, we encourage the reporter to bring them to our attention so that we can investigate them and take action accordingly."
Miss O’Neill is unhappy with Facebook’s response regarding the Dead Baby Jokes group.
She said: "It’s out of order. Their response is completely wrong. They’re turning a blind eye to it."