A woman whose image when viral on the internet after she was arrested at the Sarah Everard vigil has said “about 50” police officers have since approached her on the dating app Tinder.
atsy Stevenson said she has been left “terrified” by their advances and thought that the men had reached out to her as an intimidation tactic.
Ms Stevenson was photographed as she was handcuffed by police officers at the vigil in memory of Sarah Everard on March 13.
Hundreds attended the vigil on Clapham Common in south London despite the Metropolitan Police saying that the event would be illegal under lockdown restrictions.
Speaking to BBC London, Ms Stevenson said that the vigil was “a turning point”, where “everyone realised we actually all go through the same things”. However she added that the “sombre atmosphere… turned very scary very quickly”.
Since her arrest, Ms Stevenson claims that “about 50” police officers and security guards have approached her on the dating app Tinder.
She said: “They were all in uniform on their profiles or it said ‘I’m a police officer’. I do not understand why someone would do that.
“It is almost like an intimidation thing, saying ‘look we can see you’, and that, to me, is terrifying.
“They know what I went through and they know that I’m fearful of police and they’ve done that for a reason.”
Writing on social media following the interview, Patsy Stevenson explained that she “had Tinder gold so I could see who liked me, I didn’t match with them. There were 50 at the same time.”
She also detailed how she has been targeted with death threats and kidnap threats since her arrest and said she has become the focus of conspiracy theories.
One conspiracy theory claimed that she was a “crisis actor” who was paid to attend the vigil and get arrested.
She told BBC London: “Now there’s always that fear when I’m out and I see someone staring at me. I just want to be able to live the way you live without fear. But then again, I’m a woman.”
Ms Stevenson added that she was not “anti police” but said that police needed to start “taking accountability” for their officers actions.
Referring to the Metropolitan Police’s new advice for women to flag down a bus if they feel threatened by a lone police officer, she said: “Stop telling women how to change their behaviour just to stay alive.
“If they started looking into it properly and… listening to people’s concerns and then enacting change, we would be able to trust them more.”
The Met told the BBC that Ms Stevenson should “please contact us and provide us with more information so we can work to establish if any MPS officer is involved [and] whether any misconduct may have occurred”.