A photo of a flyer is circulating Facebook that has Miami-Dade residents in a tizzy. We were going to ignore it, but it has concerned so many of our Facebook friends that we figured it needed debunking.
The warning from the "Miami-Dade Sheriff's Department" that purports that MS13 gang members are using crying children to lure women to rape locations is quite officially fake. Just to be sure, we talked to a real cop and everything.
First, let's look at some of the telltale signs, in the flyer itself, that it's a fake:
1) There is no such thing as the Miami-Dade Sheriff's Department.
2) Police press releases don't usually refer to women as "ladies", or to people generally as "ladies & guys". They don't say "1" instead of "one", and they don't quote news outlets as having reported on their stories.
3) The memo's letterhead is of a permitting official in the city of Miami Gardens.
This week, the Miami-Dade Police Department took to their own Facebook page to re-post their own debunking of this hoax, which is a variation on a scare tactic that's been going around the internet for years.
But we felt the need to escape this internet wormhole and actually talk to a human. Miami-Dade Police spokesman Det. Javier Baez told us this morning: "That's a hoax. Every once in a while we get something like this. And it's a hoax."
There you have it. No gangmembers using children to lure women to their rape-y doom. One less thing to worry about, for now!
Of course, even people who have seen the Miami-Dade Police debunking are arguing that even if it's fake, it's good information to have. Observe:
Ah, the Internet.