Disturbing Hoax: North Carolina Woman Arrested After Allegedly Using an App to Falsely Report Her Own Killing, Costing Authorities

A North Carolina woman is facing charges for falsely reporting that she had been attacked and killed.

The 37-year-old sent anonymous messages to the Department of Social Services and one of her friends reporting her alleged murder, setting alarms for those working for the city of Franklin, North Carolina, and those close to her.

Maggie Sweeney is accused of falsely reporting her own death to a friend and the Department of Social Services. (Photo: Facebook/Franklin Police Department)

Once it was established that Maggie Sweeney was not telling the truth, she was arrested on Aug. 21. Macon County, North Carolina, authorities later released her after she submitted a written promise to appear before a judge regarding the misdemeanor on Sept. 7.

Related: She Made a Mistake’: Carlee Russell Admits Through Lawyer That Kidnapping Story Was a Lie; Police Considering Charges Against the Alabama Woman

The Franklin Police Department said the woman currently faces charges of making a false report to a police station, making a false report of death or serious injury by telephonic communication, and obstructing law enforcement officers from performing their duties.

She allegedly used an app to conceal her identity as she sent text messages to authorities and her friend claiming that she was either in danger of being killed or beaten to death with a tire iron.

Immediately after becoming aware of the woman’s plight, FPD posted pictures of the woman, listing her age, size, and other identifiers to attempt to engage the public in the search for her. NBC reports law enforcement exhausted 75 hours looking for her.

“Sweeney was reported missing on Friday, August 18, 2023, at which time FPD Officers began an immediate investigation due to the information provided which alluded that Sweeney was endangered or deceased,” the department shared on its Facebook, adding that she was later located safe and sound the next day in a local park.

“1SGT Randy Dula, continued the investigation, and was able to determine that Sweeney allegedly made anonymous third-party false reports to a friend, and the Department of Social Services that she had been murdered,” the press release read before noting the woman’s “actions caused our department, as well as other departments, many hours of work which could have been spent on other matters.”

Sweeney’s hoax comes a month after Carlee Russell, an Alabama woman, created a false narrative of being kidnapped. It also comes after a preteen performed a copycat version of Russell’s crime.

The child was charged with a felony of making a false police report concerning the use of a firearm in a violent manner and a misdemeanor of misuse of 911. The weapon seems to make the difference between Sweeney and the young student.


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