A Texas woman was arrested after she fell for a police department's fake news alert which warned that meth and heroin in the area could be tainted with Ebola.
The Granite Shoals Police Department issued the following warning on Facebook last Tuesday:
"If you have recently purchased meth or heroin in Central Texas, please take it to the local police or sheriff department so it can be screened with a special device," the warning said. "DO NOT use it until it has been properly checked for possible Ebola contamination!"
Fearing her drugs may contain the deadly virus, Chasity Hopson reportedly took them to a police station in Granite Shoals for testing. She ended up being booked on drug charges. "Our officers gladly took the item for further testing," the department wrote on Facebook on Thursday.
In a bid to capture more gullible drug users, the police repeated the warning. "Please continue to report any possibly tainted methamphetamine or other narcotics to the Granite Shoals Police Department."
Later that day, police released a picture of Hopson, who it said was "the winner of the Facebook post challenge."
Most people who viewed the initial post described it as "funny," according to News 4 San Antonio. But others dubbed it "unprofessional."
Granite Shoals Police Department said it wanted to "show all parts of the enforcement world [...] and that includes our sense of humor."
"I hope this will allow you to see who we are, humans, just like you. We have families, friends, lives, laugh, cry, and bleed all the same," the department said on Facebook.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Ebola "is spread through direct contact with the blood or body fluids of a person who is sick with or has died from Ebola" or "through needle sticks and contact with objects (like needles and syringes) that have been contaminated with the virus."