A roundup of some of the most popular, but completely untrue, headlines of the week. None of these stories are legit, even though they were shared widely on social media. The Associated Press checked these out; here are the real facts:
NOT REAL: FIVE RHINO POACHERS KILLED BY FOUR ANGRY RHINOS
THE FACTS: The story from South African satire site News@Last says a group of rhinos in the country’s Kruger National Park are seen on surveillance video surrounding the would-be poachers and trampling them. A spokesman for South African National Parks says “there is no truth” to the story.
NOT REAL: BREAKING: Barrels removed from Clinton property contained parts from 3 missing women
THE FACTS: Police dismissed widely shared stories about women’s bodies found in oil drums on Bill and Hillary Clinton’s Chappaqua, New York, property, saying they received no such reports and haven’t investigated anything of the sort. The accounts claimed the women were last seen in a Little Rock motel in the 1970s while hitchhiking cross country. The stories appeared on several sites that acknowledge fabrications and were accompanied by a photo that was taken in South Carolina in 2012.
NOT REAL: Albert Almora Showed His Middle Finger To President Trump
THE FACTS: The Chicago Cubs outfielder and his teammates visited the Oval Office during a visit to the White House last month. One picture shows Almora with his hand in his pocket and what at first glance could appear to be his middle finger sticking out. Several websites claimed Almora was making an offensive gesture toward the president. However, closer examination of the photo revealed Almora had two fingers displayed. Almora denied making a gesture and called the episode “unfortunate.”
NOT REAL: Iconic Actor & Martial Artist JET LI Dies from Hyperthyroidism at Young age of 54
THE FACTS: The Chinese actor best known to American audiences for his high-flying martial arts exploits in movies like “Lethal Weapon 4,” ”Romeo Must Die” and “The Expendables” series is not dead. Li did reveal his struggles with an overactive thyroid in 2013, saying he was in pain but not suffering. A spokesman for Li tells the AP reports of his death are a hoax.
NOT REAL: Spicer: “Trump Has The Legal Right To Cancel SCOTUS Because They Serve At His Pleasure”
THE FACTS: Not only does the president not have the legal right to “cancel” the Supreme Court, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer never claimed that he did. The story originated with admitted satire outlet Newslo. It falsely claims Spicer told reporters that Trump could disband the Supreme Court “should he feel the need for it.” The president has no power to dissolve the nation’s highest court, established through the U.S. Constitution in 1789.
This weekly fixture is part of The Associated Press’ ongoing efforts to fact-check claims in suspected false news stories.