Facebook page says “I will release Hassani Campbell if you join”

A Facebook page that says, “If 1,000,000 people join I will release Hassani Campbell” has outraged Facebookers and they want it taken down.

Hassani Campbell, is the 5-year-old boy with cerebral palsy who disappeared on August 10, 2009 in Oakland, California. The story was covered nationwide as authorities searched for the little boy and Nancy Grace just did an update on the case on her show “Nancy Grace: America’s Missing” on Tuesday. You can read the whole story here.

The Facebook page started on Christmas day with the very first status post that said, “I guess he’s spending Christmas with me, but don’t worry, I got Brawl in the basement.”
Many Facebookers have responded with messages of anger to whomever is the owner of the Facebook page. Some so angry that the language can’t be quoted.

“We all know you are a liar or you would not be doing this…but it is no joking matter and the authorities will not find it funny either!” posted Geni.

Another post says, “I believe in free speech but this is by no means in that category. How would you feel if this was one of your loved ones or if it were you? I don’t think it would be so funny then. You maybe laughing now but once facebook reviews this page they can not only delete it but ban your ip address etc. as well. I am by no means threatening you because most likely you are some teenager or older that thinks this kind of thing is funny. But put yourself in the shoes of the victim if this were actually happening and see how you’d feel then. It is no laughing matter,” posted Leala.

The page shows 122 people “like this” but there is a reason for that as explained by EmbraceYourself

“The only reason I liked this page is because I wanted to write to you that I think this is so sick….” said EmbraceYourself.

Many people have reported the page to Facebook, but it still remains up. Facebook’s “Statement of Rights and Responsibilities” governs the relationship with users on Facebook. Upon reviewing them I believe that the Facebook page would be violating Saferule #10. “You will not use Facebook to do anything unlawful, misleading, malicious, or discriminatory.”

I believe in freedom of speech and even if I don’t like what someone is saying, they have every right to say it, but I also believe in the right for a parent, a family, a citizen to morn the loss of a loved one without harrassment.

The First Amendment protects free speech, but I don’t believe anyone thought it would be protecting someone who wanted to maliciously make fun of the disappearance of a child. And even if we leave free speech out of it, the morality of the page is lacking. The last thing we need as a society, is immorality.

 

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Jerrie Dean, who is retired from Federal Law Enforcement, is the Founder of Missing Persons of America.

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