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The disbelief over unruly crowds fighting and being pepper sprayed over Air Jordan Concords turned to mourning when it was reported on social media and blogs that a young man, 18-year-old Tyreek Amir Jacobs, had been killed for the coveted shoes.
As the rumors put it, Jacobs was a teen from Washington DC and killed in Maryland, possibly at the Wheaton Mall. A photo of him was passed around, inscribed with his date of birth and date of death. But calls to police revealed there had been no killings under such circumstances in the DC, Maryland and Virginia area.
“Nothing like that has happened here, and I hope we would know,” said one Montgomery County police official. While media outlets in the district reported on disturbances around the area, none ended fatally. Still, as of this writing, some 12,000 people were participating in no less than eight Facebook groups about Jacobs’ killing. Darren Rovell, a sports business reporter for CNBC, posted about it to his 150,000 followers on Twitter, albeit with the caveat that it was not confirmed.
The photo appears to have been lifted from the NAACP’s Legal Defenders blog, posted in October 2010. Lee Daniels, communications director for the legal defense fund, says his web site administrators started noticing a bump in traffic this morning and learned of the killed-for-his-Jordans rumors. Though he knew it was a stock photo, he initially wondered if the boy in the image had indeed been killed.