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Non-league footballer handed seven-month FA ban after social media abuse of Harry Arter

Alfie Barker admitted the charge at an FA hearing.

Ireland international Harry Arter.
Ireland international Harry Arter.
Image: PA Wire/PA Images

AN ENGLISH NON-LEAGUE footballer has been banned for seven months by the Football Association (FA) for comments made to Ireland international Harry Arter on social media over the death of his baby daughter.

Alfie Barker admitted the charge at an FA hearing on Tuesday and has been banned from all football activity until 1 August 2017.

The charge relates to tweets sent from Barker’s personal account during Bournemouth’s 3-3 draw with Arsenal last month.

Barker, 18, initially claimed his Twitter account had been hacked after the abusive messages were sent to Arter. He subsequently apologised and had his contract terminated by Hitchin Town Football Club.

A tweet from an account in Barker’s name read: ”at least you didn’t lose your kid.”

A second message sent shortly after said: “big hype just for a disappointment like the 9 months leading up to your childs [sic] birth.”

The disgusting abuse related to the stillborn birth of Arter’s daughter, Renee, in December 2015.

Barker has also been fined £250 and warned about his future conduct by the FA.

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