Washington D.C., a sanctuary city, has found itself the victim of a hoax involving fake U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement flyers.
Flyers, allegedly placed by ICE, began showing up around Washington D.C. on Thursday, warning residents that it was a “violation of law” to protect or harbor “aliens.” Failing to report “aliens,” the flyer warned, could result in up to 10 years imprisonment. Photos of the flyer were posted to Twitter by user @BalkansBohemia, and quickly picked up by several news outlets, like NBC News.
Though they looked official, the flyers were not placed by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
The flyer uses the phrase, “If you see something, say something,” which came about after 9/11 and is typically associated with terrorism prevention.
The hoax was quickly called out by Washington D.C. officials.
Mayor of D.C. Muriel Bowser tweeted that the flyers were meant to “scare and divide” the residents of D.C.
The U.S. Department of Immigration And Customs Enforcement even tweeted that the flyers were fake.
As of now, the identity of the person responsible for placing the flyers around the city is unknown.
In a series of tweets, Mayor Bowser reaffirmed D.C.’s commitment to its sanctuary status.
Mayor Bowser tweeted, “[…] we respect all DC residents no matter their immigration status. Washington, DC remains a sanctuary city. #DCvalues”
For more on this story, read the entire write up at NBC News.
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