Social media hoax reports death of two University students

Madison Weaver, Staff Writer

With the ability to share stories and information in an instant, social media allows us to connect effortlessly, but can easily lead to misconstrued information. This effect was recently observed at the University when a post containing false information was shared across many media platforms.

The post, released from, made claims of an ongoing search for a man from Union County who allegedly shot and killed two University students. The post also included a photo of a man.

A Public Safety officer was alerted about the post by his son. The situation was taken care of before it could escalate. The University’s Emergency Communication released an update stating that the post was fake and that anyone who saw it should respond with a link to a University webpage that confirmed the falsity of the post.

Chief of Public Safety Steve Barilar sent out a mass email clarifying the situation and reiterating the need to respond to the false post with the link.

Barilar affirmed that the Department of Public Safety called both the state and regional police to inform them of the situation. A source was never confirmed to be responsible for the post, but Public Safety did call the man in the photo and he said that he had been receiving a lot of concerned phone calls.

“It’s [a post] that definitely would have grabbed my attention and I am impressed that the University handled it so quickly,” Mary Weinstein ’19 said.

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