Law enforcement has been in some tough situations. Most recently, social media has been credited with engaging the public.
In fact, some agencies have used social media to engage suspects who may leave items behind on a scene of a crime. Oooooo, evidence!
But this is not one of those cases.
On 07-04-18, this image was initially shared on Facebook then across various social media platforms.
The image with caption inferring that local law enforcement agency was pursuing the suspect and that the suspect dropped his/her cell phone while eluding law enforcement. Then, in order to reach out to the suspect and friends of the suspect, local law enforcement uses the suspect’s social media account to reach out and taunt.
While funny for public safety, we as trusting public safety pros need to take time to dispel rumors and verify facts. PIOs should be at the front line of this issue.
And yes, this post was actually fake. What the whut?
Here’s Chicago Police PIO Anthony Guglielmi’s response to this post gone viral.
Sooooooo, to recap:
- The initial Facebook post was not associated to incident.
- Image was borrowed from unrelated event.
- LEOs were not involved in pursuit of suspect.
- Law enforcement agencies are usually professional.
- PIO was on it and addressed concern once information was vetted w/ 7th District.
- Squashed viral post with real information. #truth
Well done CPD PIO!
Again, as PIOs we are the shepherds of our agency when it comes to reporting the facts and dispelling the rumors.
We as PIOs must remain vigilant and dispel rumors as soon as they appear. This is your job. The agency’s reputation is on the line so ensure the longevity and be cognizant of your agency’s image 24/7.