Just Because It's Trending Doesn't Mean It's True
Hoax Alert

Fake News: Police Officer Did NOT Crash Car While Shaving Her Privates

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Sat, 03 Jun 2017 08:53:25 Z)

The fake/satire site News @ Last published an article titled: "Police Officer Crashes Car While Shaving Her Privates". It opens:

A 36 year old police officer [Sophie Gwebu] from Pretoria was driving a police car this morning when she caused a pile up of about six cars when she crashed into the back of a taxi carrying fifteen people. Or rather, although she was in the driver's seat, it was actually her male coworker constable Frank Nksoi who was holding the wheel while she tidied herself up down below.

In case you're wondering just why Gwebu was trimming her hedge, she explained that she was planning to meet someone later today and she wanted to be "ready for the visit".

The image that went with the article is actually from a 2015 story about a police car hitting a VW van on a highway. No taxi, shaving or six other cars were involved.

privates.jpg

It is also telling that the name "Sophie Gwebu" was left in angle brackets ("[Sophie Gwebu]"): this may indicate the story is intended as a template for re-use later with different names and different cities, a trick often employed by fake news websites.

No other reputable news websites (or even hoax debunking websites like Snopes) currently make any mention of the events described in the article so it is pretty certain they didn't happen and none of it is true.

That didn't stop people from spreading the story around as the Trendolizer graph at the end of this article shows.

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About the author:

Maarten Schenk is our resident expert on fake news and hoax websites. He likes to go beyond just debunking trending fake news stories and is endlessly fascinated by the dazzling variety of psychological and technical tricks used by the people and networks who intentionally spread made-up things on the internet.  He can often be found at conferences and events about fake news, disinformation and fact checking when he is not in his office in Belgium monitoring and tracking the latest fake article to go viral.

Read more about or contact Maarten Schenk

About Lead Stories

Lead Stories uses the Trendolizer™ engine to detect the most trending stories from known fake news, satire and prank websites and tries to debunk them as fast as possible. Read more about how we work and how we select stories to check here.

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