Just days after the racism-fueled Charleston massacre, in which young white supremacist Dylann Roof took the lives of nine black churchgoers, a woman in Texarkana, Texas is being called out on social media for trying to incite racist attacks against the black community.
Texarkana resident Ashley M. recently posted photos of herself on Facebook after reportedly being "jumped by 3 African Americans ourside [sic] of the as [sic] Walmart." In the photos, she appears to be sporting two black eyes and a bloody nose and lip.
The problem? The wounds were obviously poorly-applied makeup. In fact, it pretty much looks like Ashley snuck a piece of charcoal into her purse at the last barbecue she attended and then just rubbed it all over her eyes.Yup, she went there.
The Daily Dot called the Texas-side Walmart (Texarkana shares a border with the Arkansas town of the same name) where the alleged attack took place. We spoke with a security worker who said no incidents had been reported there within the past week.
We also showed the photos to Texarkana Police Department public information officer Mike Jones, who responded with an emailed statement.
"I’ve talked to our detective Sergeant. He has reviewed all of the reports from the weekend and there is no report of this incident," wrote Jones. "There is also no report in our system from a person with the poster's name. We are confident is stating that this incident, if it did occur, has not been reported to this department."
The Texarkana Police Department also posted public statements regarding Ashley's claims on its Facebook page. The post stated that police officials "believe the post to be fake" and that "the injuries... are highly questionable." The post has since been taken down.
Ashley's Facebook post has also gone viral on Twitter, after Twitter user and ownyourblackness.com owner @missjia tweeted a screengrab. The responses were both damning and also kinda hilarious.In response to being mocked on Twitter, Ashley posted another photo of her "beaten" face on her Instagram profile. She has since taken the photo down. In the caption for the photo, Ashley continued to stick to her story:
"Here is your police report. Sorry I got jumped by three African American young men. I have 2 black eyes and nose still is bleeding, and somehow I am in the wrong. Enough for people to say it was makeup, how embarassing and very rude quite frankly. I don't want you pitty (sic) attention anything. I'm just warning there are dangerous people in Texarkana be careful. They did this to me for no reason in front of my 3 year old. At Texas side Walmart."By 11am Monday morning, both Ashley's Facebook and Instagram accounts have either been either removed or made private. Nonetheless, her story about being supposedly attacked by three black men has outraged the Internet. Sadly, Ashley's attempt to frame black men as dangerous criminals hasn't been the only one in recent days, following the massacre at the Charleston church.
An image is currently circulating on Facebook of a young black man holding what appears to be two guns with the caption: "Young men get your guns and kill them white ass policemen. Do not think about it just do it. Call them bitchs (sic) out set them up with two in the head."Police in Daytona Beach, Florida told WFTV that they had received more than 500 emails about the post by June 11. While officials were quoted as saying the photo "might be fake," they also said they were conducting an investigation along with the FBI and ATF, and that the man in the picture was holding "two assault rifles."
Daytona Beach might want to send those officers back to the police academy for more training. Because it's pretty clear from the gas station-like background and the coiled plastic cables attached to both guns that the guy—who also looks young enough to be a teenager or possibly a college student—is posing for a photo in a store, not trying to start a big, scary race war.
Update 12:21pm CT, June 22: When asked why the Texarkana Police Department had taken down its statement on Ashley's Facebook post, a representative from the police department responded via email with the following statement:
I was just informed by my social media manager that he was contacted by a friend of the original poster. We were informed that she is emotionally disturbed and that they are attempting to get her the assistance that she needs. We have removed the post to avoid contributing to her difficult struggle.
Update 8:58am CT, June 23: An earlier version of this article speculated that the guns in the above viral Facebook photo were from a video game. But many gun enthusiasts on social media have pointed out that the trigger locks and security cable visible in the photo indicate that the photo depicts real guns, but was likely taken in a store.
Editor's note: In light of the subject's potential mental instability, this story has been updated to remove her last name from the text and related images.