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Fake News: Drunk Driver NOT Accused of Swallowing Breathalyzer To Avoid Arrest

  • by: Maarten Schenk
  • (Fri, 28 Sep 2018 08:12:29 Z)

Did 44-year-old George Murphy from Cleveland, Ohio swallow a breathalyzer to avoid arrest after driving drunk and being stopped by police? No, that's not true: the story was made up by a Canadian website that makes up tales about bizarre sex acts and weird crimes for entertainment purposes. None of it is real.

The story originated from an article published by World News Daily Report on September 27, 2018 titled "Drunk driver accused of swallowing breathalyzer to avoid arrest" (archived here) which opened:

An Ohio man who was arrested for driving while under the influence of alcohol last night found a rather original way to beat the breathalyzer: he swallowed it!

According to the Cleveland Police Department, 44-year George Murphy was controlled by patrollers around midnight while he was driving his 2009 Ford Explorer.

The officers reported he had been driving erratically and suspected him of being under the influence of alcohol.

During a press conference this morning, Cleveland police chief Calvin Williams described the unusual scene that took place when Mr Murphy was asked to use the breathalyzer.

Screenshot of https://worldnewsdailyreport.com/drunk-driver-accused-of-swallowing-breathalyzer-to-avoid-arrest/

Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail:

Drunk driver accused of swallowing breathalyzer to avoid arrest

An Ohio man who was arrested for driving while under the influence of alcohol last night found a rather original way to beat the breathalyzer: he swallowed it! According to the Cleveland Police Department, 44-year George Murphy was controlled by patrollers around midnight while he was driving his 2

The man in the picture is actually a real drunk driver but he was arrested in Indiana for speeding while intoxicated:

Spencer County man arrested, accused of driving 110 mph in 55 mph zone while intoxicated

SPENCER COUNTY, Ind. - Indiana State Police troopers arrested a man accused of driving double the speed limit while drunk and with a suspended license. Around 3 p.m. on Monday afternoon, a trooper saw a purple 1999 Plymouth traveling 110 miles per hour in a 55 mile per hour zone on State Road 66 near County Road 550 East.

The website World News Daily Report is a well known satire website specialized in posting hoaxes and made up stories. The disclaimer on their website is pretty clear about that even though you have to scroll all the way down the page to find it:

World News Daily Report assumes all responsibility for the satirical nature of its articles and for the fictional nature of their content. All characters appearing in the articles in this website - even those based on real people - are entirely fictional and any resemblance between them and any person, living, dead or undead, is purely a miracle.

It is run by Janick Murray-Hall and Olivier Legault, who also run the satirical Journal de Mourréal, a satirical site spoofing the (real) Journal de Montéal. Very often their stories feature an image showing a random crazy mugshot found in a mugshot gallery on the internet or on a stock photo website superimposed over a background of flashing police lights or crime scene tape.

Articles from the site are frequently copied (sometimes even months or years later) by varous fake news websites that omit the satire disclaimer and present the information as real.

We wrote about worldnewsdailyreport.com before, here are our most recent articles that mention the site:

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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
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