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Netflix viewers are all saying the same thing after watching true crime documentary Can I Tell You A Secret

Netflix viewers are all saying the same thing after watching true crime documentary Can I Tell You A Secret

Social media users aren't happy

If, like me, you spent the entirety of your weekend plonked in front of the telly, binging your way through Netflix's latest true-crime thriller Can I Tell You A Secret?, you may have some questions...

The two-part docu-series sheds light on the life-shattering realities of cyberstalking, following a decades-long real-life case that took place right here in the UK between 2009 and 2021.

While still in school, back in 2009, Northwich loner Matthew Hardy began secretly impersonating some of his classmates on social media.

Befriending the victim beforehand - introducing himself with a fake profile and asking them, 'Can I tell you a secret?' - he went on to torment them by spreading fictitious, hateful rumours to their friends and family online.

After feeling the thrill in ruining someone's life, his fascination with cyberstalking took him further afield.

Despite being caught and warned by police officers, Hardy refused to stop and expanded his victim radius to the furthest stretches of the country.

Enter Kent-born paralegal Lia, student/musician Abby, and Lincolnshire model Zoe - all of whom bravely open up on their torment in Netflix's heart-stopping new thriller.

Matthew Hardy was sentenced to prison.
Cheshire Police

As the courageous ladies explain, they were each approached by a mysterious social media profile which appeared to be used by another woman, who introduced themselves by asking those six dreaded words.

What they had no idea about, however, was that Hardy was behind the fake profile, going on to mimic them on other platforms, sending harmful, hateful content to them, and share fraudulent sexually explicit messages - allegedly from them - with their nearest and dearest.

As the women explain, Hardy's online abuse severed many of their relationships with friends and family.

Abby claims that her cyberstalker told her boyfriend she'd cheated on him, sent her nude photos to her friends and family and spread rumours that she was having a sexual relationship with her uncle.

Zoe recalls her stalker spreading rumours about her to her loved ones.

Lia also recalls a fake profile of herself being used to message her friends' boyfriends and husbands, while Zoe says Hardy made a false account of her boyfriend's father, on which he'd message underage girls inappropriate messages.

The first of the two episodes sees the three women each reaching out to the local authorities for help, only for them to neglect their case.

Lincolnshire Police - who allegedly told Zoe that they'd only had the power to further investigate if there had been a 'rape or murder' - told Netflix in a statement (included in the show): "We are committed to bringing offenders to justice and safeguarding victims at the earliest opportunity.

"We welcome the opportunity to understand where they might feel we have fallen short of the high expectations we have."

In response to Abby's harrowing case, Kent Police - who she claims told her at the time that she was in 'no immediate danger' - told producers: "Kent Police takes every incident of stalking seriously.

Can I Tell You A Secret? is Netflix's latest true crime offering.

"All calls received by Kent Police are assessed for officer attendance based on the level of threat, risk and harm, and after speaking to the victim and providing her with safety advice, it was agreed that immediate attendance was not required as she was in no imminent danger."

And in Lia's case, the Kent authorities also told Netflix: "Officers carried out a thorough investigation.

"An internal review concluded that whilst the victim had been provided with an acceptable level of service, officers have contacted her via telephone to reassure her that the offence was being treated seriously."

Despite their statements, one thing that has seemingly stuck viewers is the alleged neglect from police, who only arrested Matthew Hardy in 2020 after 11 years of torment.

Hitting out at police online, one viewer penned on X: "@netflix new doc ‘Can I Tell You a Secret?’ perfectly highlights cyber stalking and stalking generally is so belittled by police today.

The women were terrified what their stalker could do.

"Shame on @kent_police, Lia had to investigate and accumulate evidence HERSELF to get justice."

Another wrote: "Can I tell you a Secret on #Netflix is showing the police force in a stunning light… They should actually be ashamed."

"Watching "Can I Tell You A Secret" on Netflix - if you have a child, it's worth watching," a third advised. "This sort of thing goes on a lot and police generally are ill equipped to deal with it - you have to make them take it seriously. I hope people have one-another's back."

Another went on: "'Can I tell you a secret?' On Netflix is haunting, and highlights the endemic of police failing female victims of crime."

Following his arrest, Hardy was handed nine years behind bars for his crimes, which was reduced to eight in 2022 by the court of appeal.

Featured Image Credit: Netflix

Topics: Netflix, True Crime, Crime, TV And Film, Politics