A sick bully who pretended to befriend a disabled airport worker urged him to kill himself and branded him a ‘disabled c***’ online.
The sickening attack came after Simon Bradley, 27, shared details of global neurological development delay – a condition he was born with – with a woman he followed on Instagram.
The condition means he has mental and physical disabilities, including a ‘droopy’ right eye.
The sick troll sent a torrent of abuse to Simon, saying his face ‘looks like a f****** battered potato’. When he tried to laugh off the abuse, the troll repeatedly told Simon to take his own life.
Simon’s sister later shared the messages on Facebook – but the sick troll screengrabbed it and shared it on her own Instagram story, with the caption: ‘Pathetic f****** c*** man he’s dead when I find him I swear to God.’
Simon’s mother Joanne, 52, said: ‘I’m absolutely devastated.
‘As a parent, I don’t think there’s any worse heartbreak than seeing your children being tormented, abused, mocked, put down, made to feel insignificant and different.
‘Simon’s been bullied and had things said about him all his life. This has highlighted to me how vulnerable people are because they don’t [all] report it.
‘We turn a blind eye far too much to what goes on online. Mocking somebody because they are disabled or look different is not acceptable.
‘If it was her child, how would she feel? She has shown no remorse.’
Simon’s family say he was bullied throughout school and has since made friends online – but his mother says the ‘very trusting’ airport worker can be vulnerable to bullies who goad him on social media.
She added: ‘Simon posted these messages on his Facebook which is incredibly unusual. He wouldn’t usually do that.
‘I think he just reached the end of the line. He posted it on his Facebook and his sister picked up on it [and began to share it], then I did.
‘Simon’s very, very trusting. He sees things in black and white and doesn’t see the grey bit in the middle.
‘He has difficulties making friends because people mock him about his droopy eye and the fact it’s slightly lopsided.
‘I don’t see him as any different but obviously other people do and he does.
‘When he’s online he just wants to make friends and for him, being online, I think he feels like he fits into society’s norm.
‘Then to have this happen to him has taken away something that was important to him.
‘He followed this girl on Instagram and she spoke to him. At first she was nice to him and then the messages started to deteriorate to those end messages which speak for themselves.
‘It’s so easy to sit behind a computer and think it’s funny without even thinking about the impact it has on the person on the receiving end.
‘On a good day he would take it [bullying] and on a bad day it would really affect him.
‘When he has a bad day, he’s feeling that he’s not part of society and doesn’t fit in. He’s very conscious of how he looks and sounds.’
The messages came on May 21 – during Mental Health Awareness Week, Simon’s mother says he is now scared to use social media.
She added: ‘From our point of view and Simon’s point of view, the outcome could have been completely different if it had been a bad day for him after she told him to go kill himself.
‘This came in Mental Health Awareness Week. For me, in this day and age, I’m horrified that people could say or even think those things about anybody with a disability.
‘He doesn’t feel safe at home, he’s insecure and very down about it all.
‘He’s refusing to accept any friend requests and he won’t speak to people online because he’s scared it’ll happen again. He’s scared people are wanting to add him to give him more abuse.
‘It’s been reported to the police a week ago and we still haven’t heard anything back.
‘From my point of view, I would like this highlighting so that somebody else like Simon doesn’t have to face it.”
Shortly after Simon’s sister posted online to expose the ‘derogatory’ messages sent to him, his tormentor is then believed to have continued to message him with further threats – even reacting with a laughing emoji to her post.