On Friday, Facebook deleted a user who repeatedly defended pedophilia and sexual exploitation of minors in a series of disturbing posts that shocked and outraged others on the social network.
The user, Henry Miller, listed his current city and hometown as Phoenix, Arizona. The account attracted attention last week thanks to a viral post that was shared more than 10,400 times.
Dozens of people commented on Miller’s posts to condemn him, telling him he was disgusting and sick. Some people also tagged the Phoenix Police Department's Facebook page in an effort to have Miller investigated.
It’s unclear whether "Henry Miller" was the individual’s real name or a pseudonym. Henry Miller is also the name of a well-known author whose sexually explicit books were banned in the U.S. for many years.
After Phoenix New Times contacted Facebook for comment on Miller's online activity, the social media company disabled his account.
A Facebook spokesperson wrote in an email, “As we explain in our Community Standards, we remove content that threatens or promotes sexual violence or exploitation. This includes the sexual exploitation or endangerment of minors, and sexual assault.”
“We have removed the violating content and have also disabled the Facebook account in question because the user has repeatedly violated our Community Standards.”
A December 10 Facebook post about Miller from user Josh Carpenter, whose profile says he lives in El Paso, Texas, was shared more than 10,400 times over the last week. Carpenter posted screenshots of several of Miller's comments. (Fair warning: Miller's statements are disturbing.)
Another user, 21-year-old Leigha Kennedy of Denver, told New Times in a message that after reading Miller's comments, she felt physically ill and anxious.
Kennedy shared Carpenter's post and wrote, "I've seen a lot of messed up people on facebook but this guy is a whole different level. I reported his Facebook page to hopefully get it removed, however, you can still read the disgusting comments he leaves defending himself."
"If you have a moment, please report his page," Kennedy added. "Read the below pictures with caution - it honestly is the worst thing I've ever seen."
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
Kennedy reported Miller's profile to Facebook several times on December 11, but each time she received a support message that said the content did not violate the social network's terms.
"We looked over the profile you reported, and though it doesn't go against one of our specific Community Standards, we understand that the profile or something they shared may still be offensive to you," the response read. "We want to help you avoid things you don't want to see on Facebook."
Miller could not be reached for comment.
Jonathan Howard, a spokesperson for the Phoenix Police Department, said officers investigate sexual exploitation cases as a part of an FBI task force known as ICAC, or Internet Crimes Against Children.