School shooting: Media mistakes Ryan Lanza Facebook page for killer

School shooting: Media mistakes Ryan Lanza Facebook page for killer

Just after 2 p.m. Friday, a 24-year-old New Jersey man named Ryan Lanza was identified as the perpetrator of a horrific massacre at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, Conn.

It turns out that the shooter, identified by authorities later Friday, was Adam Lanza--not his brother, Ryan--a 20-year-old.


Lanza allegedly walked into Sandy Hook Elementary School Friday morning, killed a classroom full of kindergartners before killing their teacher--his mother--and then himself.

Almost immediately, a Facebook profile photo of Ryan began circulating online, on social networks and television. The gleeful subtex: we got the guy.

RELATED School shooting: President Obama speaks, cries [VIDEO, transcript]

But it was, as became clear soon after, the wrong Lanza. (Authorities later revealed that someone had accidentally transposed the name of the shooter, Adam, with his brother, Ryan, possibly because Adam was carrying his brother's identification.)

Slate, after initially linking to Ryan Lanza's page, tweeted a correction that included a screenshot of him updating his Facebook page.

"Everyone shut the f*** up it wasn't me," Lanza posted. "I'm on the bus home now it wasn't me... IT WASN'T ME I WAS AT WORK IT WASN'T ME."

RELATED Elementary School shooting prompts celebrity endorsement of gun control on Twitter

Media sites removed the photos quickly, but not before thousands of people had shared the image and widely perpetuated the falsehood.

RELATED Elementary school shooting: 8-year-old saved by teacher




RELATED UPDATES: 27 dead in shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

Huffington Post

Another Ryan Lanza, @Ryan__Lanza on Twitter, has also been the subject of the false attention, gaining thousands of followers in the hours after the name began to circulate.

RELATED Royal hoax: DJs moved to safehouses after death threats over nurse suicide

RELATED New slow loris species introduced, still just as adorable

RELATED We the People Death Star reaches 25,000 signatures

RELATED According to Antonin Scalia, being gay is as bad as murder

Latest Headlines


Trending Stories


Follow Us