PALO ALTO, Calif. » An Internet troll is stirring up controversy on Facebook with a page that vociferously defends convicted Stanford rapist Brock Turner and denigrates his victim — while insinuating that it’s administered by Turner’s parents.
In 17 posts since June 9, the Brock Turner Family Support page has portrayed Turner, “our son,” as the victim of a conspiracy whose Olympic swimming dreams have been dashed. The unidentified administrator of the page has urged readers to #PrayForBrock and portrayed critics of his 6-month prison sentence as “feminazis.”
One of the most offensive posts includes a photo of a woman swigging from a bottle of liquor, with the words, “If you aren’t looking to swim, stay out of the pool.”
Some Facebook readers have caught onto the hoax, but many others haven’t. Comments on the Brock Turner Family Support page, which has more than 6,000 likes, have registered their disgust at what seems to be over-the-top insensivity on the part of Turner’s family and supporters.
“Your son is a scumbag rapist,” one commenter wrote.
Turner’s attorney, Mike Armstrong, confirmed in an email that his client’s family is not involved with the page, but did not provide further comment.
The page has even spawned an opposition group on Facebook, Delete the “Brock Turner Family Support” Page, which has repeatedly called on Facebook to spike the dark prank. Facebook has declined so far. A spokesman did not immediately respond Monday to a request for comment.
An administrator for the opposing group said that, even though the Brock Turner Family Support page appears to be the work of a committed troll, the material is reprehensible and should be removed.
“It’s abhorrent and offensive, and posts that are much harmless get removed every single day,” said the administrator, a human rights advocate who lives in Canada. She declined to give her name, citing concern over online threats. “It’s unbelievable that Facebook almost actively refuses to remove a page supporting a rapist.”
©2016 The Mercury News (San Jose, Calif.)