POLICE are investigating abusive tweets about Jessica Ennis-Hill after the Olympic gold medallist said Sheffield United should not re-sign convicted rapist Ched Evans.
Ennis-Hill issued a statement last night saying she would want her name removed from a stand at the football club’s Bramall Lane ground if the League One club welcomed the Welsh international back following his conviction for raping a 19-year-old woman in a hotel room.
Today, South Yorkshire Police said: “South Yorkshire Police can confirm they are investigating reports of abusive tweets.
“Officers are making efforts to contact the individual concerned, but have launched an investigation into the posts.”
The 28-year-old is the latest in a string of patrons to threaten withdrawing their support of the club after it invited Evans back to train with former-teammates after being released from prison.
Mrs Ennis-Hill said reinstating the footballer would contradict her view that role models ought to set a good example for young fans.
She said: “I believe being a role model to young people is a huge honour and those in positions of influence in communities should respect the role they play in young people’s lives and set a good example. If Evans was to be re-signed by the club it would completely contradict these beliefs.”
One of the stands at the Bramall Lane stadium in Sheffield is named after Mrs Ennis-Hill, a British heptathlon champion.
Her comments come after the resignations of former patrons Charlie Webster, Lindsay Graham and sixties pop star Dave Berry, amid fears Evans will be resigned by the football club.
Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, Sheffield Hallam MP, said Evans should not have been allowed to return to train with United.
The Liberal Democrat leader said if it was his decision he would not have let the footballer train with the team’s players in a bid to return to fitness following his jail term.
But Mr Clegg indicated that he believed the Welsh international should be allowed to resume his career, possibly with a foreign side.
He said Evans’ position as a role model meant the the club should think “long and hard” before deciding whether to allow him to return to the Blades.
Evans was jailed in April 2012 for raping a 19-year-old woman in a hotel room in Rhyl, North Wales.
He maintains his innocence and supporters at the club are divided on whether he should return.