In Emily Clarkson’s book, “Can I Speak To Someone In Charge?” she reveals that she was once victim to a catfishing scam.
The book collects a series of letters discussing modern life (not too unlike her dad’s series of books!), and one of the features discusses the catfishing incident in question, which occurred when Emily was still in high school.
While I won’t include the entire excerpt here (you can check it out at the source link below), I will at least highlight some passages here:
“I can’t bring myself to ruin your life, despite the fact that you turned mine totally upside down.
For when you added me on Facebook nearly nine years ago, pretending to be an older boy I’d gone to school with, you tore from me all the trust that I, at 15, should have had in people.”
“You were handsome, claiming to be 19 and now in the Army, working as a Jack Wills model before you got deployed and I, of course, accepted your friend request.
When I then received a long Facebook message from you telling me you’d seen me at a carnival on the Isle of Man earlier that week, and that you wanted to know how everything at school was going, should I have been alarmed?
Probably. But I was 15 and insecure and you wanted to talk to little old me.
Thus began our online friendship.”
CREDIT: The Sun
After revealing to her mother that she had been speaking an “Eddie Speer (fake name) who was apparently shipping off to Iraq for a six week tour of duty,” alarm bells went off for 15-year-old Emily’s mother:
“Not telling me at the time, so as not to alarm me, my mum trusted her intuition and decided to call the school, asking if anyone by the name of Eddie Speer had ever attended, to which she was told no, they hadn’t.”
“When she received the call telling her that there was no one by that name in the whole British Army, my mum finally told me. I’ll never forget this moment.”
After getting the police and the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre involved, the other shoe dropped:
“I don’t remember where I was when I was told that the police had raided your student house in the north west of England, but I remember what my mother said. “Darling, the police have found the person who has been talking to you. They’ve arrested her.
Her? Her?! I couldn’t believe it.”
It turns out this mystery catfisher had seen Emily hanging around at the Isle of Man and simply wanted to be her friend. The entire ordeal has made it difficult for Emily to trust people to this day:
“I’m constantly wondering if people are really friends with me for me or if they just do it because I’m Jeremy Clarkson’s daughter and, after the lengths you went to, who can blame me?”
It seems there is a dark side to being Jeremy Clarkson’s, or really any celebrity’s, child. I have a little girl and boy myself and these days, especially with our collective knowledge about online predators, it’s so tough to imagine something like this developing.