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Police: Greater Manchester Police receive slap on wrist for tweeting about sentencing

In response to the tough sentences being handed out to looters and those involved in the recent riots, Greater Manchester Police (GMP) made the mistake of appearing to celebrate one woman's sentence by posting about it online.

A mother of two, Ursula Nevin, who did not take part in the riots herself, was given a five-month prison sentence after she accepted a pair of shorts that her flatmate had looted.

Despite being asleep while Manchester was in chaos, Ms Nevin was convicted of handling stolen goods.

Following the conviction, GMP posted on their Twitter account: "Mum-of-two, not involved in disorder, jailed for FIVE months for accepting shorts looted from shop. There are no excuses!"

This comment was quickly picked up on and criticised.

One person replied: "@gmpolice Your celebratory sentencing tweets are promoting hatred, divison & putting your officers in more danger. Think before you type."

The original tweet by GMP was deleted and an apology posted that read: "Apologies for any offence caused from last tweet. Comment was not directed at individual person. Thanks to all for feedback messages; all your comments have been noted. You are right; it is not our place to comment on sentences."

Ms Nevin's flatmate, Gemma Corbett, had looted a Vans shop in Manchester and taken clothing worth £629. She admitted to theft and was remanded in custody and is awaiting sentencing.

Ms Nevin was told by sentencing judge Khalid Qureshi that her actions were unforgivable for the mother of two young children, aged one and five.

Judge Qureshi said: "The first reaction you would expect some to have is 'get that stuff out of my house, I have two children that I'm responsible for'.

"You would expect decent people to speak up and say 'no, this is wrong, get that out of my house'. You are a role model to your sons, yet you decided to have a look at the goods and keep some for yourself."

Related links:
Read more on the story (Guardian)
Read about the policing pledge (FindLaw)
Find local specialist solicitors throughout the UK (FindLaw)