A court barred local news reporters from a hearing over the so-called ‘smack this yute’ video attack, leading to a Twitter spat over copy-sharing.
The Croydon Youth Court hearing centred around an attack by a 14-year-old girl on a boy of the same age in a row over a drug deal, which was filmed on a mobile phone and subsequently watched by 2.7m people online.
Tom claimed he was told to “wait outside” by a legal adviser and obtain copy from other journalists who had been allowed in.
Tom’s Advertiser colleague Gareth Davies later posted his own thoughts about the incident on the social media platform, adding he was “disappointed” another journalist who was in the hearing had apparently “refused” to share copy afterwards.
The issue between the Advertiser and the Guardian has since been resolved.
David told HTFP: “I saw Gareth’s tweets that his colleague had not been able to get into the youth court with the other reporters.
“I have sympathy as I know how difficult court staff can sometimes be around youth court.
“I tweeted him back offering to share our online copy with him which our reporter had dutifully raced to send back to us straight after the case was over.
“I don’t know if the Advertiser have used that copy from us or from anyone else who managed to get into the court but in these kinds of circumstances I agree it’s usually a good thing if journalists can work together.
“If they need any help on this kind of thing in the future I’m happy for them to get in touch, and I’m sure they will do the same if we have to ask.”
The footage of the attack, known as the ‘Smack this yute’ video, led to the girl’s arrest and she pleaded guilty to assault by beating.
The girl wept and hugged her parents as she was sentenced to eight months detention in a young offenders’ institution on Thursday morning.