The Lamest Conspiracy Theory
Posted on May 25, 2011
A group of skeptics has been hounding victims of the Jan. 8 shooting in Tucson that claimed six lives and nearly killed U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, claiming the massacre was a government hoax. One belief is that Jared Lee Loughner, the accused shooter, is actually an actor hired from the Tucson area. Though this is clearly a fringe outfit, it’s amusing and disturbing to watch citizens mobilize over such a far-fetched conspiracy when there are so many real problems that beg for political engagement. —KDG
New York Times
Television images of the chaotic scene after the Jan. 8 shootings here do not convince them. Neither do the funerals for the deceased, the scars of the wounded or the federal prosecution of the man accused of being the gunman.
Some conspiracy Web sites are claiming that the shootings that nearly killed Representative Gabrielle Giffords and did end the lives of a federal judge, a 9-year-old girl and four others never actually took place. One particularly bizarre site, run by a Texas man, says it was all a government hoax that used actors.
Such obviously fantastic claims would usually not merit the attention of law enforcement, but they have in this instance because some believers have been confronting, and alarming, some of the people associated with the case in recent weeks.
Richard Kastigar, investigative chief of the Pima County Sheriff’s Department, said he passed information about the Web site to his intelligence unit. He reacted angrily to those denying the shootings. “There were bodies sent to the morgue, people’s loved ones,” Mr. Kastigar said.
Flickr / SearchNetMedia
The scene of the Jan. 8 shooting outside a Safeway market in Tucson where six people died and 13 were wounded.