A popular conspiracy theory alleging that piles of bricks are being left outside of businesses across the U.S. has returned for Election Day, but a quick glance at the claims proves it to be as easily debunked as before.
The allegation, which has repeatedly spread online throughout the year, claimed that bricks were purposely being dropped off at protests in an effort to encourage violence and vandalism.
Despite the conspiracy being largely debunked months ago, new claims have surfaced alleging that the bricks have returned in anticipation of civil unrest stemming from the presidential election.
The theory blames everyone from billionaire George Soros to left-wing activists for attempting to incite destruction in major cities.
A photograph posted to Twitter on Tuesday asserted that a pile of bricks had “mysteriously” appeared overnight in Chicago.
The Daily Dot was able to locate where the photograph was taken by searching for “Sherman’s Ice Cream” on Google after noticing the logo on the left side of the image.
Although the ice cream company is based out of Michigan, the Daily Dot was able to find a shop on TripAdvisor out of Downers Grove, a southwestern suburb of Chicago, that is supplied by Sherman’s.
Using Google Maps and Street View, the Daily Dot was able to confirm that the Illinois-based ice cream shop, known as “Every Day’s a Sundae,” was in fact the location of the original photo.
After calling the shop, an employee told the Daily Dot that the bricks had belonged to a restaurant next door known as “GIA MIA” and had been used to build a patio.
The Daily Dot located GIA MIA’s Facebook page and also confirmed that it had finished building a patio last month.
In a phone call with the Daily Dot, a manager for GIA MIA stated that it had used the bricks to build a patio but that the bricks had been removed some time ago.
A Twitter user also posted what he claimed was a photograph taken outside the location on Tuesday showing no bricks as well, suggesting that the initial picture had likely been taken while the patio project was ongoing.
The brick image is just one of many making the rounds on social media as Americans prepare for the presidential election.