Facebook ‘news’ page shares fake stories about Winston-Salem police, officers say

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (WGHP) — Winston-Salem police say “North Carolina Breaking News” Facebook page is sharing untrue stories about their department, according to a news release.

After discovering the posts, police say they reached out to administrators of the Facebook page. The apparent administrators responded in Russian.

The Winston-Salem Police Department has since reported the page to Facebook.

Officers cited two specific posts on the Facebook page that tell stories of law enforcement performing good deeds.

Winston-Salem police say the posts are based on true stories from outside of the state, and Winston-Salem police officers were never involved.

“While the Winston-Salem Police Department applauds the respective law enforcement officers and agencies for the good work, it is apparent the stories were altered to include Winston-Salem Police Department involvement,” Winston-Salem police said in a news release.

The first post, which appeared on Feb 14, tells the story of LaVonte Dell, who was pulled over “in Winston Salem” for window tint. When the officer said he did not have a car seat for his daughter, the post said, the officer led him to Walmart and bought a car seat for him.

The police department confirms this did not happen in North Carolina and did not involve Winston-Salem officers.

The post also includes an alleged response from an “Officer Joshua Johnson” at “Winston Salem Police Department.” Winston-Salem police say there is no officer by that name in Winston-Salem.

Police say the incident actually happened on April 18, 2016, in Westland, Michigan. WSPD included a link to an ABC News article about the real LaVonte Dell in Michigan.

A second post on the Facebook page claimed that a Winston-Salem police officer sat with a dog after it was hit by a vehicle.

This did not happen in Winston-Salem and did not involve any Winston-Salem officers, police say.

The story was based on a viral Facebook post from the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office in Florida.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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