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Press Releases

Thursday 01/20/2011 1:13 PM - False Text Messages

Contact: Rob Bryn
Phone: (805) 781-4547
Type of Incident: False Text Messages
Date and Time of Incident: 1-19-20
Place of Occurrence: San Luis Obispo County
Victim Information: Several
Suspect Information: Unknown
Details of News Release: San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office crime prevention personnel are alerting residents that a false text message is being circulated claiming that it originated from local law enforcement. The message is warning people not to pick up a crying child on the side of the road who wants to be taken home. The message warns about not helping the child and instead taking them to the nearest police or sheriff's station. The message goes on to claim that gang members are associated with this text and plan to assault anyone who goes to the child’s home. This warning was not issued by the sheriff's office and currently the SLOSO does not use texting to communicate this type of information. In addition, person(s) locating a lost child should call authorities to the area where the child is found and not transport the child unless directed to do so by local authorities. Urban legends proliferate the internet and have migrated to the texting community over the last several years. According to Snopes.com the current false text dates back to 2005 and variations of the message began to appear again in 2010.

Prepared By: rbryn
Released: Thursday 01/20/2011 1:14 PM