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Penny Lancaster, 49, will train to become a Special Constable with City of London police next month after she appeared on a TV show that put celebrities on patrol with cops. The former model, who married singer Rod Stewart in 2007, admitted her longing to help local communities and support officers after a number of government budget cuts. Before her police ambitions were realised on Channel 4’s ‘Famous and Fighting Crime’ last year, she called for harsh punishments after the 2017 Manchester Arena terror attack. She listed unusual methods of retribution to get back at “sick individuals” who had tried to gain more followers by posting fake pleas to help find lost children.
Penny blasted the perpetrators of the “sick” online act, which she claimed had turned attention police away from finding real victims and missing individuals.
In 2017, she vented on the ‘Loose Women’ panel: “It makes my blood boil! I’ve got goose pimples all over, they really need to be named and shamed!”
She felt that social media users were able to “hide behind their computers” and described their posts as “absolutely sickening”.
Penny continued: “Of course, there are all these poor families out there desperately trying to find their children that have gone missing and imagining the worst, and exploiting that is absolutely awful.”
ITV co-host Andrea McLean explained that she “didn’t understand the mindset” of the individuals and struggled to accept their actions.
Former BBC ‘Birds of a Feather’ actress Linda Robson added that they had “wasted police time”, which was made all the more horrifying because victims had been “blown-up”.
Meanwhile journalist Jane Moore compared the perpetrators to those who suffered with the mental health illness Munchausen syndrome by proxy.
She explained that’s where “you want to sort of place yourself at the center of a drama – but as far as I’m concerned there’s a [legal officer] for something like that – wasting police time”.
Penny continued to call for them to be “named and shamed” as well as to share their photograph among local communities.
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She felt they should be forced to carry out community service, to which Andrea added: “In bright fluorescent jackets, so everyone knows!”
Penny then went further to suggest an unusual form of punishment that she felt would fit the crime they had committed and teach social media trolls a lesson.
She said: “Sit them in a room showing them videos of people being blown-up.
“Just to put their faces right in it and say ‘Do you understand the severity of what we’re going through and what you’re doing to these people?’
“Maybe even [get them to] sit and listen to some of the families that are suffering and make them feel the guilt behind it all – I don’t think they even realise what they are doing!”
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