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Ciara O'Rourke
By Ciara O'Rourke January 28, 2020

No, a Texas man dressed up as an alien didn’t kidnap 79 people

There’s already enough to fear in the world without counting a prolific kidnapper in an alien costume among your concerns. But an Instagram post would have you believe that such a predator was in our midst. 

The image appears to be a screenshot of a news story with this headline: "Texas man admits kidnapping 79 people to anally probe them while disguised as an alien." 

Below a supposed mugshot of this person, the story with an El Paso dateline continues: "A man who was arrested by the FBI yesterday has confessed to kidnapping and sexually assaulting several dozen people while using costumes, drugs, and special effects to have his victims believe they had been abducted by aliens." 

This Dec. 18 post was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.) 

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That’s because the story originated on a satire site. World News Daily Report notes that "all characters appearing in the articles in this website — even those based on real people — are entirely fictional and any resemblance between them and any person, living, dead or undead, is purely a miracle." 

But the Instagram post lacks that caveat, or any other clues to help social media users understand that the headline isn’t real. 

We rate this Instagram post Pants on Fire.


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No, a Texas man dressed up as an alien didn’t kidnap 79 people

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