“Hacktivist” group Anonymous has threatened to name the four boys who allegedly raped a 17-year-old Nova Scotia teenager unless the Royal Canadian Mounted Police brings charges against the youths.
Rehtaeh Parsons was sexually assaulted by four boys back in 2011 and then was bullied when they began circulating photos of the attack. She was removed from life support on Sunday after hanging herself.
In a news release on Wednesday, Anonymous said it had positively identified two of the boys and that the RCMP should take “immediate legal action” against them.
“We do not approve of vigilante justice as the media claims,” the group said in its statement. “That would mean we approve of violent actions against these rapists at the hands of an unruly mob. What we want is justice. And that’s your job. So do it.”
After investigating the crime initially, police decided there was “insufficient evidence” to press charges. National outrage over the case has caused authorities to reconsider, the National Post reported.
“I am deeply saddened - as I think are all Nova Scotians - by the death of this young woman," Justice Minister Ross Landry said. "It's important that Nova Scotians have faith in the justice system and I am committed to exploring the mechanisms that exist to review the actions of all relevant authorities to ensure the system is always working to the best of its ability, in pursuit of justice."
Landry cautioned that even though people are angry, that doesn’t mean they should resort to vigilantism. “Leah [Parsons] said she didn’t want harm to come to the other young people, that her daughter would not have wanted that,” said Landry after meeting with the deceased teen’s mother. “We don’t want another child taking their life because some vigilante group thinks it’s OK … maybe it’s a wrong name — then what would they do to someone?”