Police investigate Dane Baptiste death threats to Jewish woman

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Police investigate Dane Baptiste death threats to Jewish woman

EXCLUSIVE: Female comedian speaks to Jewish News as Metropolitan Police ask public for help in investigation and Jewish allies compare the UK comedy scene to the Wild West

Baptiste’s post has been reported to the Metropolitan Police by social media users. The force has confirmed it is making “inquiries”.
Baptiste’s post has been reported to the Metropolitan Police by social media users. The force has confirmed it is making “inquiries”.

The Metropolitan Police are investigating a threatening public message directed by a British comedian to a Jewish woman.

As reported by Jewish News, Dane Baptiste, who has appeared on comedy panel shows including Mock The Week, took to social media this week to write to the fellow comedian: “I’ll sit in prison while your family sit at the cemetery.”

Following the publication of Wednesday’s now-deleted post, Baptiste has been dropped by his agents.

Met Police said: “Enquiries are being made in relation to a post reported to police by a number of social media users on Wednesday 1 May. We have since made contact with a number of people who are helping our enquiries. We would continue to urge anyone who has information which could help our enquiries to contact police on 101, quoting CAD8660/01MAY24.”

Speaking exclusively to Jewish News, the female comedian said that she hadn’t spoken to Baptiste in more than ten years, since bumping into him at the Edinburgh Fringe: ”I’ve had no communication with him in more than a decade”.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the woman said: “Even then, it was just a ‘hi, how are you”.

Dane BaptistBaptiste, who has appeared on comedy panel shows including Mock The Week and 8 Out Of 10 Cats Does Countdown and fronted the BBC Three sketch programme Bamous, apologised to the “Jewish community, my colleagues and my fans” on Thursday.

Darren Richman, journalist and comedy writer, told Jewish News: “I’m completely disgusted. His apology was a joke. He didn’t even mention her.”

Richman adds: “The comedy scene is like the Wild West. There is no HR. Comedy has a serious problem where someone can openly post that and think it will be fine.”

Fellow Jewish comedian Rachel Creeger told Jewish News: “There are so many layers to Dane’s hideous post and its shallow apology. It’s unacceptable to issue a death threat to anyone, of any faith or gender. To then backtrack without acknowledging that this is what you’ve done does not equal regret for your actions. I, and other Jewish comedians, have reached out to him in the past about his choice of language around the subject of Jews and Israel.

Screenshot: Darren Richman Twitter

“It has been really heartening to see industry peers condemn his posts, and Jewish comedians coming together to support each other and the target of his message. Our love is always stronger than their hate.”

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