Most people react with support and love (or thoughts and prayers!) to unthinkable tragedies like the mass shooting in Las Vegas. But there are also those who find a malicious thrill in spreading false rumors at a time when Americans are seeking real information. Here are a few FALSE stories to watch out for:
Police identified the shooter as 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, but that didn't stop trolls from claiming comedian Sam Hyde, or Muslim convert "Samir Al-Hajeed," was the gunman.
Twitter user @immryx shared a picture of a man he claimed was his missing father. The photo, tweeted Monday, was actually of porn star Johnny Sins. When Mashable reached @immryx and asked why he posted the lie, he responded:
I think you know why...for the retweets.
My dad is missing after Las Vegas shooting. Please RT and share. We are distraught #LasVegas#LasVegasShooting #MandalayBaypic.twitter.com/eiDgO0VCbb
That's a picture of Johnny Sins, the porn star & he has no kids‼️— CosmoCat🅡🅔🅢🅘🅢🅣 (@C_doc_911) October 2, 2017
Taylor Joshuas does not exist, and the accounts spreading this lie have been taken down.
is going to be in for a rude awakening when the police interrupt his anime watching. Doubt this kid was using a VPN to mask his IP.— Keith Sunderland (@keithsunderlan3) October 2, 2017
Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil is not missing, but at least one account has shared a photo of him, claiming it's their missing brother, a "practicing Muslim," who disappeared during the shooting:
Ozil is not actually missing. Many internet trolls treat these false reports as recurring jokes during mass shootings. None of them are real.