Content warning: This post contains details of cyber bullying and mental health some may find triggering.
Jasmin Newman was subjected to vicious online abuse and harassment for two years. In Sydney’s Downing Centre Local Court, on October 19 she was granted a two-year Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) against her cyber bully.
The woman is Melanie Natasha Hamilton (known by the name Coutts) who used an alias profile online as “Annabelle Jones”.
Here, Jasmin talks to Corrine Barraclough for Mamamia about the nightmare that unraveled her life.
I’m in hiding. I went into hiding nearly two years ago. I support male victims of domestic violence and work in male suicide prevention. Sadly, we seem to have reached a point where extreme feminists don’t like women who support men.
A friend of mine alerted me to a Facebook page, ‘Domestic Violence Abuser Excusers’. It specifically targeted me. Posts became increasingly threatening. Coutts doesn’t work alone and I haven’t ruled out further legal action against other key people involved.
I was called “evil” and “dangerous”. Taking it one step further they called me a paedophile excuser, then a paedophile myself and claimed I had paedophiles living in my house.
It was all lies but they wanted to trash my reputation and my name. I started to live in fear – and I was worried sick about my two children. I have a son and daughter who are both school age.
The bullies posted online that I had taken “semi-naked photos” of my son. I had, in fact, taken a photo of him on his birthday proudly posing on the new bike he’d got as a present. It was a scorching hot summer’s day and he had pyjama bottoms on.
Again they claimed I was a paedophile. They claimed I was pimping out my daughter. It all made me feel sick.
They said I should be “run out of town”. It’s hard to find words to express how terrified I was at this point. It seemed as if they could just keep making up whatever lies they wanted and ruin my life, and that of my children.
I have a Labrador, a beautiful pet who is as calm and dopey as they come. One night he pounced up from the bed, raced to the door and was barking like mad. I heard footsteps outside.