#Donald Trump's victory on #Election day resulted in protests and demonstrations in cities across America, along with numerous reports of racially-motivated attacks by emboldened Trump supporters. As law enforcement officials sift through these allegations, however, it is becoming increasingly clear that many of these reported hate crimes were nothing more than fabrications.
Bowling Green student charged
The day after the election a student at Bowling Green State University named Eleesha Long claimed that she was physically and verbally assaulted by white males wearing Trump shirts. Long filed a police complaint on November 9 in which she stated that three boys threw rocks at her while she was walking down Crim Street. Long wrote about her experience on Facebook, catching the attention of a campus police officer, who took her to the police station where she gave the statement.
However, authorities became suspicious when they spoke to Long face to face. "Several times the complainant changed her story about what happened, where it happened, and when it happened," said Lt. Daniel Mancuso of the Bowling Green Police Division to Toledo's ABC-13. Mancuso obtained a search warrant for Long's social media and Verizon history and discovered that Long had not only fabricated the entire account of her attack but was guilty of making numerous racist remarks against Trump supporters.
According to law enforcement, Long's Facebook messages included statements such as "I hope they all get AIDS," and "I haven't met a decent Trump supporter yet." Long was issued a citation and charged with falsification and obstructing official business.
Massachusetts man facing charges for filing fake report
In the Boston suburb of Malden, an African-American male filed a police report on November 15 claiming that two white men accosted him after getting off a bus near Broadway Square. The complainant, whose name has not yet been released by authorities, accused the men of using racial slurs and warning the victim that we would "soon be lynched" because America is now "Trump country." Malden police designated the man's report as a #hate crime, and an investigation was immediately opened.
"It has been determined that the story was completely fabricated,” said Malden Police chief Kevin Molis in a statement to the Boston Herald. “The alleged victim admitted that he had made up the entire story."
Muslim woman admits to filing false police report
On November 9, an 18-year-old Muslim woman from Lafayette, Louisiana, filed a report with University of Louisiana campus police claiming that two white men attacked her, stole her wallet and shouted racial slurs before tearing off the woman's hijab-- the traditional head covering worn by Muslim women. In her report, the victim claimed that one of her assailants was wearing a Trump hat. Because the incident occurred off campus, the case was referred to the Lafayette Police Department, who said the following afternoon that the woman had confessed to making up the story.
Karl Ratcliff, the spokesman for the Lafayette Police Department, confirmed to WWLTV that the alleged victim will be charged with filing a false police report.
Santa Monica police sought fictional victim
On November 10, the Santa Monica Police Department posted an alert on its Facebook page seeking information about an unconfirmed story involving a man identified as "Chris Ball" who was reportedly beaten up by Trump supporters on election night. After the victim was unable to be located, it was discovered that the story about the alleged assault was nothing more than an Internet hoax.
While filing a false police report might appeal to some disgruntled voters as an outlet for their frustration or anger, it is important to keep in mind that these phony claims put the lives of innocent citizens in jeopardy because the time and resources that go into investigating each fraudulent claim detract from a police department's ability to protect and serve the community.