Stoke & Staffordshire

Teen's apology call over MP Michael Fabricant's tweet

Darcy Norgate Image copyright Darcy Norgate
Image caption Darcy Norgate voted for the first time in 2017's general election

A teenager has demanded an apology from her MP after he called her an offensive name on Twitter.

Darcy Norgate, 19, said she was shocked when Michael Fabricant replied to her with a slang word for female genitalia.

She said he launched a "personal attack" after she questioned his commitment to Burntwood, Staffordshire.

The MP for Lichfield tweeted that Ms Darcy had not said she was his constituent and he thought of the word as a synonym for "twit".

Image copyright Twitter
Image caption Michael Fabricant responded to people who criticised him for his tweet to Darcy

The exchange began with a tweet on Friday afternoon in which the Conservative MP said Labour was failing to meet expectations in the local elections and it had been a disappointing day for the party.

Ms Darcy replied: "Not as disappointing as Burntwood since you neglected it."

Minutes later, Mr Fabricant, 67, responded with the insult, saying she "seems unaware that there is no vote this year in Burntwood!

"And I neglect no part of my lovely constituency. That's why I'm loved!"

Later, in a statement on Twitter, Mr Fabricant said Ms Darcy's profile did not indicate her age or location.

He added that "for all I know, she is a Russian troll in St Petersburg" but he would be "happy to meet and talk about politics" if she contacted him "the proper way through my Parliamentary website or letter".

Ms Darcy, a media student who lives in Burntwood, said she felt Mr Fabricant had tried to "publicly humiliate" her.

"It isn't the way I would expect any professional to behave," she said.

"My mum is a teacher and my dad works for the NHS and if they had spoken to clients or students that way, they would be sacked," she added.

"I don't want him to be sacked. I just want an apology, just to say 'I am sorry I shouldn't have said that'."

Image copyright PA
Image caption Michael Fabricant has been an MP since 1992

"I feel like he used [the word] in a way to try and shut people down. But I feel I want to stand up for myself and other young women," she said.

"I never attacked him personally."

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Mr Fabricant, who was first elected for Lichfield in 1992, declined an interview with the BBC.

The Conservative Party has been contacted for comment.

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