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Fri Jun 5, 2020, 03:56 PM

Deputies Investigate After Family On Camping Trip Harassed [View all]

Source: Associated Press

Deputies investigate after family on camping trip harassed, June 5, 2020 GMT

FORKS, Wash. (AP) -- Authorities say a multiracial family camping on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington state was harassed and confronted by people who accused them of being political activists with antifa and trapped them at a remote campsite in the woods.

Sgt. Shaun Minks of the Clallam County Sheriff's Office says the family of four arrived Wednesday in the town of Forks, Washington, in an old converted school bus and stopped to buy camping supplies at a local store.

He said as they were leaving the store, the family was confronted by people in several vehicles who asked them if they were from antifa -- short for "anti-fascists"-- an umbrella term for leftist militant groups that confront or resist neo-Nazis and white supremacists at demonstrations.

The family told the people they weren't associated with any group and were camping. Minks said the family was able to drive out of the parking lot and head for a campsite off a logging road about five miles outside of Forks. The Peninsula Daily News reports the family told deputies that at least four vehicles followed them as they drove away. They said that two of the vehicles had people in them carrying what appeared to be semi-automatic rifles...

Read more: https://apnews.com/c7f6d65e4c1b76c784f63e547403cca9

*Related: > 'Antifa Bus’ Hoaxes Are Spreading Panic Through Small-Town America.' Misinformation leads to panic and suspicion and even police action. The Verge, June 5, 2020.

Mythical buses full of bloodthirsty antifa protestors are causing panic in rural counties throughout the country — even though there’s no evidence they exist. The Associated Press has catalogued at least five separate rural counties where locals have warned of imminent attacks, although none of the rumors have been substantiated.

Notably, the rumors are often tailored to a specific local region, a “hyperlocal” approach sometime used to boost the spread of misinformation on social media platforms.

NBC News first reported on the recent surge of antifa-related misinformation, some of which was promoted by white nationalist groups posing as antifa accounts. But even after the rumors were debunked, they continue to spread on Facebook, often inspiring real-life confrontations and instances of violence...

Read More, https://www.theverge.com/2020/6/5/21281581/antifa-bus-hoax-trump-misinformation-protests-police

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