A TEENAGE girl who unleashed a “horrendous” series of social media threats in a row over her sister’s parenting skills has been spared a prison sentence.

Alana Reid told her victim it was “time for killing you and putting you six feet under” during a series of six messages sent via Facebook Messenger last July.

But the 18-year-old was spared a prison sentence after a court was told she believed she was “defending her sister’s honour” in the light of “malicious” claims about her sister’s parenting skills.

Reid and her sister, Irene Reid, both members of the travelling community living at Manse Drive in Alexandria, appeared in the dock together at Dumbarton Sheriff Court on Friday for sentencing.

Alana Reid had previously admitted sending messages that were “grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character”, made worse by prejudice relating to disability, on July 3 last year.

Irene Reid, 19, had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to shouting, swearing and threatening to harm the mother of Alana Reid’s victim at Clydebank rail station on June 18.

Fiscal depute Craig Wainwright described six messages sent by Alana Reid to her victim on July 3 and gave details of the threats made.

In one of them she said “you better make sure you say your prayers”, and in another she warned: “If you talk about my little brother, you’re going to wish you were dead.”

Mr Wainwright said the Clydebank rail station incident happened after Irene Reid saw the mother and daughter getting off a train.

He told the court Irene Reid had said: “If anything happens to me, I’ll f****** kill you.”

Mr Wainwright said the incident wasn’t reported to police until July 5 – two days after the threatening social media messages were sent.

Irene Reid’s solicitor, Jonathan Paul, said the animosity grew out of “malicious” concerns raised with social workers about Irene Reid’s parenting skills.

He said: “It is completely inappropriate behaviour, but against a background of being criticised.”

Brian McGuire, defending Alana Reid, went further, alleging that the criticism of Irene Reid’s parenting was down to prejudice against the travelling community.

He said the victim of Alana Reid’s threatening messages had previously made sweeping claims about the travelling community, “stating things like they were inbred, squinty-eyed and involved in incest”.

Mr McGuire told Sheriff Simon Pender: “Those are things Alana Reid has heard before and wouldn’t necessarily react to, but in all the circumstances she responded in the fashion you see.

“That was entirely inappropriate and it’s something she bitterly regrets. If she had not responded she wouldn’t be here today.

“I don’t suggest the content of the messages is anything other than entirely inappropriate, but it doesn’t stand alone.”

Sheriff Simon Pender told Alana Reid: “This was a horrendous series of messages on a so-called social media website.

“It’s no excuse that the other party may have behaved inappropriately.

“There seems to be increasing use of sites such as Facebook for committing offences such as this. It represents not the social but the anti-social aspect of such sites.”

Addressing Irene Reid, he said: “Whilst there may have been a background to this there is no suggestion that on the day anything was said to you. There is no excuse for conduct such as this in any event.”

Alana Reid was told by Sheriff Simon Pender to carry out 300 hours of unpaid community work – the maximum allowed – within 12 months, while Irene Reid was fined £250.