No Truth to Online Threat Against Houses With Flags, NJ Cops Say
Law enforcement in New Jersey said Tuesday that a rumor about households being targeted for displaying flags, both American and "thin blue line" in style, is just that — an unfounded rumor amid the country's turmoil sparked by the police killing of George Floyd.
The state Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness shared an alert on what it said was "a bogus text" that claimed rioters were planning to target homes displaying American, law enforcement, and Trump flags.
"These messages were likely created to stoke fear from existing protests and promote further discord," the state alert said as shared to Facebook.
East Brunswick Police Chief Frank LoSacco said his department had shared an internal message Sunday about the information before it had been vetted. He said it unfortunately was spread to the public via social media, before being proven to be un-substantiated.
LoSacco also shared a public information alert Monday, explaining that the information has proven to be unfounded.
He urged all residents to check the source of content when seen on social media and said the police department works to be proactive about sharing credible information through their own venues and by working with the media.