Wiltshire

Anne-Marie Ellement: Mum backs Army anti-harassment drive

Cpl Anne-Marie Ellement Image copyright Family photo via Liberty
Image caption Cpl Anne-Marie Ellement's killed herself five years ago at Bulford Barracks in Wiltshire

A poster campaign aimed at tackling harassment in the Army has been welcomed by the mother of a soldier who killed herself after being bullied.

Cpl Anne-Marie Ellement was bullied for two years after accusing two colleagues of rape. She took her life in 2011.

Her mother, Alexandra Barritt, said: "I don't want to feel like she's died in vain and she's wasted her life."

She now wants her daughter to feature on the posters, which the Army says it will consider when more are produced.

'Shouting out abuse'

Cpl Ellement, from Bournemouth, endured two years of bullying and harassment by colleagues who accused her of being a liar.

She took her own life, aged 30, in October 2011 at Bulford Barracks in Wiltshire.

Ms Barritt said: "I hope that no-one else who reports sexual assault ever has to go through what she went through: calling her names, banging on her door, shouting out abuse."

Her mother secured a second inquest into her death in 2014, which found bullying was a factor in her suicide.

A court martial in April cleared former soldiers Jeremy Jones and Thomas Fulton of rape - which they had both denied - but they were told by the judge their behaviour was "disgraceful" and "extremely unpleasant".

Image caption The posters depict examples of bullying, intimidation and harassment

The Army has now produced a series of posters featuring images of sexual assault, intimidation, inappropriate touching and bullying among soldiers.

"They're shocking images and I think anyone who's bullying and who looks at those photos might think, 'Is that me?' and what it would feel like to be the other person on the receiving end," added Ms Barritt.

Head of Army personal services, Brigadier John Donnelly, said: "I think the tragic death of Ann-Marie Ellement... has really made people far more aware of it and I think everyone is doing all that they possibly can to prevent a reoccurrence of it."

The posters all feature models dressed as soldiers but Cpl Ellement's mother wants her daughter on them.

"Not only would it be a tribute to her but it would hammer the message home to see a real person who's been through that on the posters."

Image caption The posters were made in response to the bullying Cpl Ellement went through before she took her life
Image copyright Service Prosecuting Authority via PA
Image caption The soldier, from Bournemouth, reported the rape but no action was taken to investigate her allegations

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