Police today condemned the makers of a gruesome animated film, purporting to show the alleged killing of Bradford prostitute Suzanne Blamires, and demanded its removal from the internet site YouTube.
The graphic computer game-style images, on the international video sharing website, shocked friends and relatives of the three alleged victims of self-proclaimed “Crossbow Cannibal” Stephen Griffiths.
The two-minute film, made by Taiwan-based Next Media Animation Limited, depicts a woman resembling Miss Blamires being brutally killed by a man.
Griffiths, of Holmfield Court, Thornton Road, Bradford, has been charged with the murders of Miss Blamires, 36, Shelley Armitage, 31, both of Allerton, and 43-year-old Susan Rushworth, of Manningham. He described himself as “The Crossbow Cannibal” when he first appeared before magistrates.
He will next appear before a Bradford Crown Court judge on Monday.
The dismembered remains of Miss Blamires were found in the River Aire at Shipley last week. The search for the other two women, both also prostitutes, is continuing.
Yesterday a friend of Miss Rushworth and her family told of his horror when he saw the film on the website.
Steve, who did not want to give his full name, said: “It is horrendous, absolutely disgusting, particularly at this time when it has only just happened.
“The film is very graphic and exactly as it is alleged to have happened and must be absolutely horrendous for the families involved.
“I have tried to contact YouTube to ask for the film to be removed, but it is still there. It should be deleted immediately for the sake of the families.
“It takes time to make a cartoon. Somebody must have gone to a lot of trouble to do that. The families are really upset as it is, something like this can only make it worse for them.”
A West Yorkshire Police spokesman said: “This video is in extremely bad taste, totally insensitive to the families and we have asked that it is removed immediately.”
Next Media Animation describes itself as the largest full-service 3D animation studio in Asia, providing animation to order to some of the biggest entertainment and news providers in the world.
Michael Logan, of Next Media Animation, said the animation was made as part of Apple Daily Taiwan international news coverage of a crime in the UK. The coverage was based on reports and information available at the time, he said.
He maintained: “As journalists, we’re not insensitive to feelings of crime victims and their families. With all our news coverage we strive to report accurately and fairly.”