Mob violence in the streets, rampant killings by people in masks, chaos and anarchy and disorder. The Hollywood blockbuster The Purge pictured an America where, for one night a year, all crime was legal, no matter how evil or heinous. It could never happen, right? Well, an online rumor about a version of the titular purge coming to my home town of Louisville, Kentucky, provoked fear, anxiety, and lots of people watching the city closely for chaos that never happened. The Louisville Purge turned out to be nothing more than a high school hoax.
In news broken by a local high school paper, the duPont Manual Redeye, the teenager in question spoke out about the hoax gone wild. The hoaxer, a student at Iroquois High School, expressed regret for his actions and is aware that he faces both repercussions at school–he’s been kicked off the football team–and the local police department, who amped up coverage and protection in anticipation of Purge-like craziness that never really happened.
“It was originally supposed to be just a fun thing, I never thought it’d get as serious as it did. I was really shocked the first time I saw local media covering it.” He added, “I was sitting in my house and watching The Purge, and I thought of the tweet and picture that started it. But didn’t think it’d get that big from there. I didn’t mean any harm by this at all. I love my city.”
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