Dr Alex George 'sickened' by 'Love Island' death threats

Alex George said he's 'sickened' by the trolling of a 'Love Island' contestant. (Doug Peters/EMPICS)
Alex George said he's 'sickened' by the trolling of a 'Love Island' contestant. (Doug Peters/EMPICS)

Dr Alex George has said that as someone who lost his brother to suicide, he was “sickened” to hear that a Love Island contestant has received death threats.

ITV had to issue a warning when abusive messages were sent to Chloe Burrows after her decision to couple up with Aaron Francis saw early fan favourite Shannon Singh dumped from the show.

Former Islander Dr Alex – whose 19-year-old brother Llyr took his own life in 2020 – has said he was disgusted to hear about it.

“I am shocked and appalled at what we have witnessed online over the last few days," he wrote on Instagram.

Read more: Dr Alex George says he felt guilt over brother's death

"I am saddened to see how much negativity and hate there has been online during this series of Love Island.

"Hard to comprehend that people are sending death threats and encouraging contestants to 'kill themselves' just because they don’t like what they are seeing on screen."

The doctor then referred to his brother and former Love Island presenter Caroline Flack, who took her own life last year at the age of 40.

“As someone who has lost a brother to suicide, I find this truly sickening,” he wrote.

“Have we learnt nothing since the passing of our beloved Caroline Flack?”

Dr Alex George from Love Island attends Festifeel Festival 2018 by Coppafeel at House of Vans on October 6, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Joseph Okpako/WireImage)
Dr Alex has spoken out against online trolling. (Joseph Okpako/WireImage)

Dr Alex – who the government appointed as a young mental health ambassador - went on: “There is no justification for online bullying and abuse. Before you send hateful vitriol, have a little thing, what if that was your brother or sister receiving that. What if that was your child on the end of that hate?

“THINK before you type. Be kind. Always.”

Earlier this week, family and friends of Burrows posted a message on Instagram saying she had been bombarded with abusive messages from trolls encouraging her to kill herself.

The family also referred to Flack and the deaths of former Love Islanders Sophie Gradon and Mike Thalassitis.

EMBARGOED TO 0001 FRIDAY MARCH 12 File photo dated 22/1/2019 of Caroline Flack whose mother has said social media companies
Caroline Flack took her own life. (PA)

Gradon was found dead aged 32 in 2018 and Thalassitis took his own life the following year, aged 26.

“Have the deaths of Sophie, Mike, and Caroline taught us nothing?” the statement said.

“Not only that, but people are flooding her inbox threatening to kill her themselves. People… this is a GAME show, there is a cash prize!

“We understand the frustration surrounding @shannonsinghh’s eviction – we feel it too! She didn’t deserve to leave so early but Chloe does not deserve to DIE because Shannon had to leave the villa!”

ITV waded in, saying the trolling was “wholly unacceptable”.

Read more: Love Island - Laura Whitmore shares tight COVID measures as hit show returns

The broadcaster wrote on Instagram: “We take these matters extremely seriously and will support cast members and their families in reporting such posts.

“We would once again urge all of our viewers to think before posting, and remember that our Islanders are people with feelings.”

For confidential emotional support at times of distress, contact The Samaritans at any time by calling 116 123 or emailing jo@samaritans.org.

Watch: Shannon Singh has become the first contestant to be dumped from this year's Love Island