A 21-year-old woman with the same name as the 26-year-old who fled lockdown in Auckland with their partner to Wānaka, is being slammed with hate mail on social media.
She told 1News heaps of people were adding her on Facebook and following her on Instagram before explicit messages started coming in.
“The messages have mainly just been angry people calling me some choice names and asking how Wānaka was,” she said.
“People have accused me of lying about my real personal details.
“They’ve told me that my photos are out there forever and I will never live this down," she says.
The woman says she switched her accounts to private and didn’t engage with any of the messages.
“Initially, I wasn’t bothered by them I mean I knew I hadn’t done anything wrong but when I had people sharing my personal photos around and the messages kept coming I felt pretty violated and upset.”
She says her personal reputation has been hindered when she knows she didn’t do anything wrong.
“Clearly the real offender has gotten rid of all their social media accounts so I seem to have taken the brunt of angry people.
“I just think that they [offender] need to come forward and take responsibility for their actions.”
“A public apology clearly won’t change what they have done but I think accountability is key in this situation and they need to own up to their mistakes,” she told 1News.
Amongst all the awful messages she says she has also received messages of support which she says has been nice.
“Hate mail full stop is not OK and I totally get that people are angry and rightfully so, however sending a hurtful message to someone doesn’t achieve any good for anyone.”
The woman says there’s "always a person at the other end of a message and if you wouldn’t send that message to your sister, friend, or mother - you should reconsider what you are writing".
In terms of the lockdown breach, it’s alleged a man, 35, and his 26-year-old partner breached Covid-19 travel restrictions by using essential worker status to drive from Auckland to Hamilton and then fly south to Otago.
The couple currently has name suppression which is due to lapse tonight if no appeal is made.