A UK police force has been left embarrassed after it shared “fan-art” that turned out to be an image of a furry.
The Cleveland Police Force in Yorkshire shared an illustration allegedly drawn by a 14-year-old that depicted one of their officers as an anthropomorphic dog.
In a tweet, they wrote: “Look at this amazing and unique artwork of one of our Redcar response officers (PC Crutchley) – by talented 14-year-old Ellie. She created this after some positive local engagement work by our officers.”
The tweet contained the illustration as well as an image of PC Crutchley who the illustration was allegedly based on.
A furry refers to someone that dresses up as an animal alter-ego, and among wider society, the group is sometimes associated with adult or political themes.
\u201cLook at this amazing and unique artwork of one of our Redcar response officers (PC Crutchley) \u2013 by talented 14-year-old Ellie . She created this after some positive local engagement work by our officers.\n\n@Trashy_Tech\u201d
One Twitter user pointed out what appear to be SS bolts on the dog’s radio – a white supremacist symbol with neo-Nazi links.
They wrote: "'We’re not being trolled. It’s the work of a 14-year-old. Please be supportive.' There’s literally an SS symbol on the radio screen, you absolute mugs!"
Another argued: “No one has done their reputation more damage on social media than the British police.”
Due to the social media response, the police force issued a tweet to insist the image was completely “innocent”, and it remains online.
They wrote: “1/2 Cleveland Police is aware of the interest on social media in the recently published artwork. This is the artwork of a 14-year-old girl who created the art following some positive engagement work with the Redcar and Cleveland Response Team.
“2/2 There is no hidden messaging or political statement being made in the art. It is an innocent design created by a young girl.
“Please can we ask that people respect the talent and consider the impact the negative comments may have on such a young person.”
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