Shana Grice's Murder Case Proves Why Police Need To Take Stalking Allegations More Seriously
In a case of 'too little, too late,' three officers are now facing disciplinary action over the case of a woman who was fined for wasting police time after reporting that her ex was stalking her.
That woman went on to be brutally murdered in March 2017 and became yet another tragic case of the police not taking stalking victims seriously.
Shana Grice was just 19 when she reported her ex-boyfriend Michael Lane five times in six months to police and was accused of, and fined for, wasting police time before he slit her throat and attempted to burn her body to destroy evidence.
Michael, who was convicted of her murder in 2017 and subsequently jailed for 25 years, had assaulted Shana in the street, slashed her car tyres and tracked her movements after she ended their relationship.
He also stole a key to the teen's house in Portslade, near Birghton, to sneak into her room while she slept. It was later revealed he had previously been reported to police for stalking by 13 other women.
Her parents have rightly slammed Sussex Police for "treating her [Shana] like a criminal", stating that the action was "too little too late".
A subsequent report found stalking cases are not being properly investigated.
As a result, two officers, one of whom has now retired, will face gross misconduct proceedings at public hearings next month.
A third faces disciplinary action for internal misconduct .
"Our daughter took her concerns to the police and instead of being protected was treated like a criminal. She paid for the police's lack of training, care and poor attitude with her life," said her parents Sharon Grice and Richard Green via the statement issued through Hudgell Solicitors.
"It's only right that the police make changes, but it's too little, too late for Shana.
"Sussex Police should not be applauded for this."
Social media agree. And many women have chimed in to cite that they were treated with a similar blasé attitude when they tried to support incidents of stalking.
One woman tweeted: "This whole fucking thing has BOILED MY P*SS. I reported someone for online harassment and blackmail and I was told they couldn't do much as it was from someone in America and there were more important things they had to deal with."
This whole fucking thing has BOILED MY PISS. I reported someone for online harassment and blackmail and I was told they couldn't do much as it was from someone in America and there were more important things they had to deal with.
- Katy Angelidi, Beauty Unfiltered (@makeupbykaty) April 10, 2019
Facialist and skincare expert, Caroline Hirons said: "They should all be fired. All of them. Actual rage. BELIEVE WOMEN."
They should all be fired. All of them. Actual rage. BELIEVE WOMEN. https://t.co/pGtOrk2MxM
- Caroline Hirons (@CarolineHirons) April 10, 2019
Head of family, domestic violence and stalking law at Watson Ramsbottom Solicitors, Rachel Horman, tweeted: "There should be manslaughter charges here not "disciplinary action". One of the most appalling failures of policing I've seen. This is typical many officers attitude to stalking victims."
There should be manslaughter charges here not "disciplinary action". One of the most appalling failures of policing I've seen. This is typical many officers attitude to stalking victims https://t.co/JWoNSana3H
- rachel horman (@rachelhorman) April 10, 2019
Sarah Green, co-director of the End Violence Against Women Coalition, told The Argus of both cases that more has to be done: "Numerous inquests and inquiries have found that multiple police forces have failed to protect women who were murdered.
"There is a massive failing in police leadership on domestic and sexual violence which is not simply about cuts.
"The Home Secretary should call time on the promises to do better and require improvement or removal of leaders in forces where women are not being protected."
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Featured Image Credit: Sussex police/PA