“They all need a good beating”: Costa staff under fire from Dorset councillor Peter Chapman
A Dorset councillor has sparked anger by posting a message on Facebook saying female staff at a coffee shop should be beaten for providing him unsatisfactory service.
Weymouth and Portland Borough councillor Peter Chapman wrote on the social networking site: “Terminally slow (and bad) service from the bone idle bitches at Costa Dorchester today, they all need a good beating.”
The Preston ward councillor, who was first elected in 2007, appears to have since deleted his Facebook account.
Mr Chapman’s comments have been criticised by fellow councillors. Kate Wheller, Labour and Co-operative councillor representing Wyke Regis, said: “My initial reaction was surprise because it’s very out of character for Councillor Chapman to speak in those terms.
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“I don’t think it was defensible. Domestic violence is something we take very seriously and is not the subject for a joke under any circumstances. I was very concerned.
“This showed a sad lack of respect”.
Meanwhile Women's Action Network Dorset chair Toni McKee called for the councillor to step down.
Councillor John Birtwistle, a Liberal Democrat representing Weymouth East, said: “I’m absolutely amazed that he did anything of the sort. That’s not the Peter Chapman I know”.
Councillor Chapman, a Conservative and the council's spokesperson for finance and assets, told This is Dorset: “The post was taken from my Facebook account which was always set to 'friends only'. The post was old causing no offence as it was read in context by people who know me well and took it with the humour intended.
“Very recently I accepted a friends request by a Lib Dem councillor I’ve known for many years and been on good terms with and shortly thereafter the Echo get a screen print of the post.
“Draw your own conclusions as to how the Echo ended up with a comment never intended for the public domain.”