WMFE is Central Florida's primary provider of NPR programming on 90.7 FM and Classical Music on 90.7 HD2. Part of the community since 1965, WMFE focuses on providing quality national and local news and programming. We inspire and empower all Central Floridians to discover, grow and engage within and beyond their world.
Support for 90.7 WMFE is provided by

Officer Reassigned After Indicating School Shooting Was Hoax

Stay tuned in to our local news coverage: Listen to 90.7 WMFE on your FM or HD radio, the WMFE mobile app or your smart speaker — say “Alexa, play NPR” and you’ll be connected.

NORTH MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (AP) — A Florida police officer has been reassigned after he appeared to suggest on social media that a school shooting that left 17 people dead was a hoax, officials said Monday.

North Miami Beach police announced on Twitter that Officer Ericson Harrell was placed on administrative duty with pay pending an internal review.

The Sun Sentinel first reported that a March 29 Facebook post under Harrell’s name asked, “What proof do you have? What evidence do you have, that anyone was killed other than #MSM accounts, alleged witnesses and a couple of funeral processions? #StonemanDouglas #SandyHook.” #MSM is a common hashtag on Twitter that stands for “mainstream media.”

The post was referring to the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland. Similar hoax theories circulated following the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting that left 20 students, six staff members, the shooter’s mother and the shooter himself dead in Connecticut.

Another post under Harrell’s name, on March 22, referred to five of the school’s students featured on a Time magazine cover as “ALL PAID ACTORS/ACTRESSES!!”

Shortly after the Parkland shooting, some right-wing groups began spreading false information on social media that several vocal shooting survivors were crisis actors, not actual high school students.

A Sunday post on Harrell’s account acknowledged the investigation.

“Well, if you haven’t heard already, I’ll be standing in front of the man because of my questioning the Parkland narrative!!” the post said.

No one from the police union that represents Harrell responded to a telephone message seeking comment.


Get The 90.7 WMFE Newsletter

Your trusted news source for the latest Central Florida COVID-19 news, updates on special programs and more. Support our extended coverage.

GET THE LATEST

WMFE Journalistic Ethics Code | Public Media Code of Integrity

TOP