Canadian Activist Found Guilty of Criminal Harassment for Sharing Street Art on Instagram

May 18, 2015 | Liam Mathews

Jennifer Pawluck was convicted of criminal harassment last month and on Thursday was sentenced to 100 hours of community service and 18 months probation for posting a photo of street art featuring an illustration of a shot cop on Instagram, the Montreal Gazette first reported. The 22-year-old was also banned from posting publicly on social media for a year.

Pawluck was arrested in April 2013 after posting a photo of street art to her Instagram. Pawluck did not create the art, which depicts former Montreal police department communications officer Ian Lafrenière with a bullet in his head and the acronym “ACAB,” short for “All Cops Are Bastards.” Pawluck was a participant in the 2012 student protests in Montreal, and posted under the handle @anarcommie. She claims she didn’t know who Lafrenière was when she posted the photo. Lafrenière, during Pawluck’s trial, said that the photo caused mental anguish to himself and his family.

Pawluck told Hyperallergic, “I am unfortunately not responding to any media questions … following my sentencing I’d prefer to keep a very low profile.”

Canada has relatively prohibitory free speech laws for a democratic country, and the law has been criticized for being vague and overly restrictive.

(Photo: Daily Dot)