Imagine if Americans found guilty of racist tweets ended up in the Stoney Lonesome? Who likes Screamo Cockface’s chances on Cellblock H? Over in Wales, biology undergad Liam Stacey was hit with a nearly two month jail sentence for mocking Bolton’s Fabrice Muamba via Twitter after the midfielder suffered a heart attack during last March’s FA Cup tie with Tottenham. With Stacey being released earlier today, Swansea University gave him the boot, as reported by the Guardian’s Steven Morris :
Stacey sparked an outcry following Muamba’s cardiac arrest in March when he tweeted: “LOL, Fuck Muamba. He’s dead.” Other Twitter users immediately criticised Stacey, prompting him to post further offensive and racist comments. He branded some people who censured him as “wogs” and told one to “go pick some cotton”. Stacey was quickly traced by police, arrested and jailed by magistrates in Swansea.
He was also suspended from university, where he was a final-year biology student. The university has now imposed a full suspension until the end of the academic year. Stacey, from Pontypridd, south Wales, will be allowed to sit his final exams as an external candidate next year. But even if successful he will not be invited to the graduation ceremony.
In an interview with BBC Wales’s Week In Week Out programme, which is being broadcast on Tuesday, Stacey said “I had had a lot to drink. I don’t know why, I decided to tweet about it. Then about half hour, hour later I was getting responses back and I wasn’t in the right frame of mind to think what was going on. It just got all out of hand then. I didn’t intend being a racist when I got up that morning, I just wanted to go out and have a good time with my friends and watch the rugby. Within about an hour, two hours, everything escalated.”
Stacey said he hit back when other Twitter users criticised him. “I was retaliating to what they said about me. I realised about an hour later it had gone nationwide and it was like a witch-hunt on Twitter for me.”