Fake Article About Suburban Lottery Winner Fools Thousands on Social Media - NBC Chicago

Fake Article About Suburban Lottery Winner Fools Thousands on Social Media

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    It’s a story about a man who lived out the dream of so many workers across the U.S.

    Not only did he win the lottery, but he used those winnings to get the ultimate revenge on his boss.

    The only problem is, it never happened.

    The fake news article being shared across social media comes from World News Daily Report, a satire site that publishes “fictional” content.

    In the article, a 54-year-old man named Brian Morris, from Clarendon Hills, Illinois, allegedly bought more than 20,000 tons of manure and had it dumped on his boss’ property. Morris, according to the story, had been in the media spotlight two weeks earlier after winning a $125 million Powerball prize.

    The story includes quotes from area police and a mugshot of a man laughing.

    As of Thursday morning, the article had been shared more than 55,000 times on Facebook.

    But the mugshot is not of Brian Morris. It’s actually the mugshot of Ronald R. Searl, the village manager for west suburban Westmont who was charged in 2014 with driving under the influence, according to an article about the arrest from the Chicago Tribune.

    A footer at the bottom of World News Daily Report’s website also reveals that stories on the site are satirical.

    “World News Daily Report assumes all responsibility for the satirical nature of its articles and for the fictional nature of their content," the footer reads. "All characters appearing in the articles in this website – even those based on real people – are entirely fictional and any resemblance between them and any person, living, dead or undead, is purely a miracle."

    Neither the village nor the Clarendon Hills Police Department responded to requests for comments on the story. 

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