Ray Lytle

The misreporting of rumors as Facts in Ferguson
The misreporting of rumors as Facts in Ferguson

I am amazed at the inaccuracies that have been reported around the Michael Brown Shooting in Ferguson, MO. A lot of this is because of the short attention span of internet users BUT some of it is simply the furthering of agenda from media outlets.

Case in point is the story that led the Sean Hannity show on FOX NEWS last week for several nights. The story is the fracturing of the orbital bone of officer Darren Wilson, the police officer who shot Michael Brown.

The orgin of the misreporting can be attributed to a Conservative St Louis blogger who said he heard a rumor that Wilson had an orbital fracture. It is looking more and more like the blogger heard the rumor on a Conservative local radio show hosted by a notoriously slanted conservative host who had an ANONYMOUS caller tell him she heard from a friend of Wilson that he was beaten by Brown and received a fracture.

By the time the story reached Social Media it included an X Ray of a fracture that was not WILSON. In fact it was a stock image of a completely unrelated injury to another person from 2008 that was copied and pasted from the internet. That didnt matter to Fox News though who posted the image as if they found the great smoking gun to break this whole case wide open. Drudge, BreitBart and the Blaze filled their conservative news site pages with stories about Wilsons bashed in face.

The problem is NONE OF IT is substantiated fact. No hospital in St Louis has confirmed this, Nobody in the Ferguson police Department has confirmed this, Nobody in the Wilson circle of family and friends has confirmed this, Nobody with St Louis County or the FBI has confirmed this. IN FACT the only thing that actual journalists who have researched this have heard is off the record statements that it is 100 % false. Several unconfirmed sources from all of the above have told actual reporters that it is untrue. That’ the fact and it should be reported that way. Unconfirmed sources say that the Orbital Fracture story is untrue. There has been no confirmation of any of the Orbital Fracture rumor that has been discovered. Of course the story should never have been started in the first place except that is the story that furthers the narrative that the conservative media outlets has set.


Another inaccuracy being widely reported is this one. 
Many blogs and social media reports say that Michael Browns clothing did not have any gun powder on it and therefore it proves that Brown was shot at a distance of more than 20 feet away. 
Although this is being reported as fact it is not one.
The report began after the medical examiner that preformed browns autopsy on behalf of Brown family said that there was no gun powder residue found on Browns body.  Somehow this ended up being reported as no residue found on his clothes but that would have been impossible for the Examiner to conclude because St Louis County never provided Browns Clothing to the private examiner. He only received the body to examine. The Brown family is trying to get the clothing but as of yet they have not had access to it. So any media outlet or blog or any other story you see that says there was no gun residue on the clothing is false. No gun powder on the clothes would be big proof that Brown was shot at a distance which is in contrast to the Officers statement. outlets that have reported the No Residue on the clothes are not being truthful. The truth is we don’t know. 

Now they could have reported that it is “unlikely that the clothing had residue if the body didn’t according to Blah blah blah” but nobody even tried to find an expert to say that. Instead they ran with the rumor as a fact because it furthered their narrative that Wilson was gunned down.

When it comes to stories like this it is shocking how the narrative chosen by the various media an internet outlets determines the tone and (made up)Facts of the story.

This has to change.

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