Connecticut Woman’s Photo Stolen and Used in Facebook Hoax
Karena Bennett is a 21-year-old mom, who up until recently led a relatively normal life with her infant son and husband.
That is, until, she got tagged in a photo on Facebook.
On Thursday, Feb. 18, Bennett was working a routine morning shift at a small local restaurant when her phone alerted her that she had a Facebook notification.
As she opened it, she couldn’t believe her eyes. A picture of the young woman with her husband and son had been juxtaposed with a story of a Detroit mom who allegedly had 14 babies with 14 different men. The photo first appeared one year prior in the Milford, CT, Mirror newspaper when Bennett’s son was featured as the first baby born in 2015 in Milford.
“To be honest, I laughed about it at first. It was just ridiculous,” Bennett, of Milford, Conn., told the Free Press. “It seemed like a joke”.
But unfortunately, the situation soon escalated and seemed to be anything but a joke. Typically, 90% of online experiences begin with a Google search. But with viral content like what Bennett was dealing with, you don’t need to search for it — it’s everywhere. From Facebook timelines to websites to blogs, the viral hoax soon accumulated more than 6,000 comments from around the world.
Many of the comments were harsh, judgmental, and cruel, personally targeting her appearance.
“I don’t understand why someone would do this to me,” Bennett said. “I really do wish I could find the person and ask, ‘Why?'”
Since the post first went live, things have certainly quieted down. However, Bennett still wants to know who used her photo, why they did it, and she even wants to bring them to court and sue them for slander and defamation.
But for now, Bennett is trying to keep it together.
“I think I’m just living day by day,” she said. “It was definitely a big shock. I guess it is what it is. Sometimes I feel like it isn’t such a big deal.”