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Twitter Troll Who Harassed Madeleine McCann's Family Found Dead

Illustration for article titled Twitter Troll Who Harassed Madeleine McCanns Family Found Dead

A woman who was sending abusive messages to the Madeleine McCann's family was found dead on Saturday.


Just days after being publicly outed as an Internet troll who was sending messages to the family, UK resident Brenda Leyland was found dead at a Marriott Hotel in Leicester. Via the BBC:

Mrs Leyland was confronted by [a Sky News] reporter who put to her she had posted messages attacking the family on Twitter via the handle @sweepyface.

She replied: "I'm entitled to do that."

The Mirror has footage of SkyNews reporter Martin Brunt's confrontation with Leyland over the tweets. Leyland's tweets were aggressive and repeatedly accused the McAnn's of being directly involved in their daughter's disappearance, according to The Daily Mail:

Leyland, who was educated at a convent school and studied at Goldsmiths, University of London, is among a group of hate-filled critics of Kate and Gerry McCann who have posted hundreds of vile messages about the couple online.

The trollers wrongly believe the McCanns were involved in their daughter's disappearance.

Among the many comments attributed to Mrs Leyland on Twitter was one that said: 'Q 'how long must the Mccanns suffer' answer 'for the rest of their miserable lives'.'


Madeleine McCann disappeared in 2007 during a family vacation to Praia da Luz, Portugal. She was three years old at the time. The McCann's were cleared of involvement in her disappearance in 2008 by authorities in Portugal. In a recent interview about the trolling, her father Gerry McCann told the BBC it was time to do something about the harassment.

"Clearly something needs to be done about the abuse on the internet....I think we probably need more people charged."

He described how he and his wife Kate, who live in Rothley Leicestershire with their nine-year-old twins, do not read posts about them on the internet because it was too "upsetting".

According to police, Leyland's death is not being treated as suspicious.

Image via Getty.

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This sounded very much like the beginning of the third season/series of Luther...until According to police, Leyland's death is not being treated as suspicious.

And yes, this comment is pretty much just an excuse to post and Idris Elba gif.