A death hoax targeting Trevor Noah is using the details of Christina Grimmie‘s death to make people think he died. The host of “The Daily Show” is rightly calling the report “fake news.”
On Monday, Noah apparently came across Houston News, a website that uses a URL designed to make readers think they are on the site belonging to The Houston Chronicle. The newspaper’s actual address is chron.com, but this deceptive outlet goes by houstonchronicle-tv.com. To further muddy the waters, the website features a number of news stories that are legitimate, in addition to articles that are flat-out hoaxes.
Such is the case with the piece Noah discovered. The headline blares, “BREAKING: Comedian Trevor Noah shot dead while greeting fans after concert.” The story dramatically begins, “It was a two-gunned stranger — possibly a deranged fan — who murdered the South African king of comedy Trevor Noah as he signed autographs after a night concert in Orlando.” Now, here’s where it gets more disturbing: The site’s article goes on to copy and paste details and quotes from the real-life murder of Grimmie last year, and pretends they are about Noah’s supposed death.
The fake report name-checks the man who murdered Grimmie, as well as her brother, who tackled the gunman. To dupe people, the story asserts Marcus Grimmie was a friend of Noah’s who tried to intervene when the comedian was supposedly shot. Gallingly, Houston News goes on to write, “Initially, we thought it was hoax news because we least expected that.” But it IS hoax news.
Noah was never shot, and his “Indian manager,” referenced in this egregious piece, never made a Facebook posting about such an incident. In fact, the quote attributed to this made-up person is actually word-for-word what Adam Levine posted on Instagram after Grimmie was shot. It’s disgusting, to say the least, that this site would take the heartbreaking details of Grimmie’s very real death and use them to spread 100 percent fake news about Noah’s non-death.
It seems, however, that Noah didn’t realize the tale was grossly regurgitating the details of Grimmie’s murder, as he made a joke about the story on Twitter. In reference to the headline, “BREAKING: Comedian Trevor Noah shot dead while greeting fans after concert,” he cracked, “Fake News. I shot them.” While the appropriateness of the quip is certainly debatable, Noah is 100 percent right in calling this fake news.
As reported previously this year, Noah was also the victim of a death hoax back in March. If so inclined, the offensive new hoax can be read below.
By Shari Weiss