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The Hoax Museum Blog
Category: Law/Police/Crime
A Visit from the Secret Service — A couple of stories about writers receiving visits from the Secret Service have been getting a lot of attention in the blogosphere, and a lot of people have been wondering if they're real or fake. The first case involves fanfic writer Annie Sewell-Jennings who posted an entry on her blog in which she satirically prayed that Bush would die. A couple of weeks later, according to her, "the Secret Service showed up on my mother's front door to talk to me about what I said about the…
Posted: Mon Nov 01, 2004.   Comments (11)

Man Tries to Kill Wife to ‘Save Marriage’ — If there was an award for stupid excuses, this guy would get one. William Dahlby threw a live electrical wire into his wife's bath, and when she tried to jump out, he pushed her back in. But he says that he's innocent of trying to kill her because he only did it to "save the marriage." He was hoping the near-death experience would jump-start their flagging relationship, so to speak. Apparently William didn't realize that the old saying about the quickest way to a woman's heart being…
Posted: Fri Oct 29, 2004.   Comments (6)

Extreme Kidnapping — If you're searching for unusual thrills, why not try getting kidnapped? Extreme Kidnapping promises that it will allow you to "customize your own kidnapping!" Yup. For the right price, women in fishnet stockings will show up unannounced at your door, whisk you away, and keep you bound and gagged in their basement for a few days. As weird as this sounds, I actually think it's real, mainly because I've heard of this before. Back in 2002 a guy called Brock Enright was in the news for…
Posted: Wed Oct 20, 2004.   Comments (12)

Fake Maoists — Fake Maoists are running amok in Nepal, robbing people and extorting money from shopkeepers and businessmen. What's next? Fake Marxists holding up banks? Phony Socialists looting liquor stores? Meanwhile, the Real Maoists are fighting back against the Fake Maoists who, so they claim, are trying to ruin their reputation. For some reason this reminds me of the fake eunuchs at large in India.
Posted: Thu Oct 07, 2004.   Comments (0)


Game Show Sting — If you're a wanted criminal you may want to think twice about showing up to appear on a TV game show. British police created a fake game show, Great Big Giveaway Show, to which they invited twenty people on their wanted list. Seventeen of them were arrested. I guess no one can resist a chance to be on TV. (Thanks to Andrew Nixon for the link)
Posted: Tue Oct 05, 2004.   Comments (4)

Stupid Counterfeiters — How not to run a counterfeit money scam. a) Buy merchandise at Wal-Mart with fake money. b) Return merchandise a few days later and ask for your money back. c) get your fake money handed back to you.
Posted: Tue Oct 05, 2004.   Comments (3)

False Alert — Normally I ignore things like bomb hoaxes, but this one was too good to pass up. Security officials at Mackay Airport went on high alert and evacuated the terminal when a "rubbish bin started humming furiously." Upon inspection, they discovered a vibrating sex toy "emitting a lively buzzing sound" inside the trash can. A sheepish 26-year-old man stepped forward and admitted the device was his. He had thrown it away before boarding because he didn't want to go through security with it.…
Posted: Mon Oct 04, 2004.   Comments (5)

Preparing for Emergencies — The British government recently put up a website, preparingforemergencies.gov.uk, filled with advice (most of it fairly obvious) on what to do in case of an emergency. In response York University student Thomas Scott put up this website, preparingforemergencies.co.uk, that looks almost identical but instead offers advice on what to do in situations such as being attacked by a zombie (destroy their brain), or alien invasion (negotiate using sign language). Anyone can see that Scott's…
Posted: Fri Jul 30, 2004.   Comments (0)

Fake Washing Suds — Consumers in England have been alerted to be on the lookout for fake washing suds. Rogue boxes of 'Bold 2in1' are masquerading as the real thing. A government official is quoted as saying: "Consumers are aware of counterfeit DVDs and computer games but fake washing powder is unusual and goes to show the length that counterfeiters will go to deceive the public." I certainly wasn't aware of this problem. I think I could use washing powder for years without ever noticing that it was fake,…
Posted: Wed Jul 28, 2004.   Comments (2)

Nude Photos Required to Enter Canada — The Toronto Sun reports that exotic dancers applying for a visa to enter Canada are now expected to submit photos of themselves performing in the nude... to prove that they really are exotic dancers. Immigration lawyer Mendel Green claims that the rules are quite specific: "They can't be partially nude. If they don't have pictures in the nude, they are not going to wiggle their bottoms in Canada." This sounds very weird. Could the Toronto Sun be the victim of a joke? Are they pulling…
Posted: Tue Jul 27, 2004.   Comments (5)

Ass-Kicking Sheriff — Kristen sent in this picture of a Kern County police car bearing a decal with the motto, "We'll Kick Your Ass... And take your doughnuts too." The picture is doing the email rounds (it's been doing them for about a year) accompanied by a caption that explains: Kern County California police drove this car for 1 week before an officer noticed what the graphics company employee did on the passenger side of the car. The employee did this on his last day working for the graphics company…
Posted: Wed Jun 09, 2004.   Comments (4)

Citizens for a Murder-Free America — This is an old site, but I hadn't seen it before. It pretends to be the homepage of a lobbying group called 'Citizens for a Murder-Free America' who are campaigning for passage of 'Precrime' legislation that will help stop murders before they happen. In reality, the site is part of the publicity campaign for Steven Spielberg's movie Minority Report, which was about a future society where the police use psychics to see into the future and tell them about murders before they happen (based…
Posted: Mon Jun 07, 2004.   Comments (0)

Fake Cop with Guard Sheep — I've heard of plenty of cases of people pretending to be cops, but this one takes the cake. It's the line about how "the bogus policeman used to patrol at night in company of a sheep that looks like a dog" that really boggles my mind. I'm trying to visualize a sheep that could pass for a dog, but my imagination just isn't good enough.
Posted: Mon Jun 07, 2004.   Comments (2)

Fake Road Rage Takes Turn for the Worse — If you break down by the side of the road, what should you do? Use your cellphone to call for help, of course. Or, if you're a complete idiot, you can pretend that you and your buddy are fighting so that concerned motorists will call the police for you. A group of budding geniuses in Massachusetts chose option B, and soon ended up in jail after a policeman showed up and ordered them to the ground at gunpoint.
Posted: Thu Jun 03, 2004.   Comments (2)

Horse and Hound Humor — According to Horse & Hound magazine, British health authorities have decided to make it the law that all children must wear face masks and rubber gloves while doing yard work or grooming horses. Health and Safety spokeswoman Lirap Ducek is quoted as saying, "Childhood asthma has increased three-fold in the last 10 years, and we want to ensure that children are protected against picking up bugs which can have long-term health implications." But before you send your kid out in a rubber…
Posted: Wed May 19, 2004.   Comments (5)

Don Fulci, Terrorist Mastermind — According to US News, one day last April the FBI, acting on a tip from an informant, went on alert to track down an evil reclusive millionaire terrorist mastermind named Don Emilio Fulci who was planning chemical attacks against London and Washington DC. FBI Director Mueller was even informed about the threat that Fulci posed. Only later did someone in the White House realize that Don Fulci is the name of the crime boss in a video game named Headhunter. I wonder if that day in April…
Posted: Tue May 11, 2004.   Comments (2)

Fake Abductions More Common Than Most People Realize — The abduction of Audrey Seiler, and subsequent revelation that she had faked the abduction herself, has been generating a lot of media attention. But in an interview with the Newhouse News Service, Ben Radford, managing editor of Skeptical Inquirer magazine, points out that cases like this are far more common than most people realize. By his estimate, they occur about three of four times a month, but most of the cases slip under the media's radar. In the early stages of the Seiler case,…
Posted: Tue Apr 13, 2004.   Comments (0)

Restaurant Strip-Search Hoax — According to the Wall Street Journal a strange prank is becoming a real problem for restaurants throughout America. A phone prankster calls up a restaurant, pretending to a police officer, and asks the manager of the restaurant to strip search the store's employees. The reason given is usually that the police are searching for stolen money or drugs. And time after time the store managers comply with the request. I've seen cases of this prank reported in the news before, and I assumed…
Posted: Tue Mar 30, 2004.   Comments (2)

Push Button for Walk Signal — I've long suspected that those buttons on corners that you're supposed to push to get a walk signal are a bizarre hoax. Just a facade created by city governments to let us pedestrians feel like we possess some small measure of control. Now this article (NY Times, reg. req.) largely confirms my suspicion. The article only discusses New York City, but I think the situation is the same throughout most of the country.
Posted: Mon Mar 01, 2004.   Comments (33)

Fake Cop — If you're going to drive around in a car pretending to be a cop, for God's sake don't pull over a real cop.
Posted: Mon Dec 08, 2003.   Comments (0)

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All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.