FACT CHECK: Video Claims To Show Someone Attempting To Steal An ATM During George Floyd Unrest

Elias Atienza | Senior Reporter

A video shared on Facebook purportedly shows a man attempting to steal an ATM during unrest following George Floyd’s death.

“During the riots this guy straight up stole an ATM and tried to put it on the public bus,” reads the caption.

Verdict: False

The video, originally posted in March 2019, shows a prank and is unrelated to recent unrest.

Fact Check:

Protests and riots erupted in major U.S. cities following the death of Floyd, a black man who died in Minneapolis police custody after an officer knelt on his neck for over eight minutes, according to video of the incident. Property damage, looting and violence have occurred during some of the protests, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The Facebook video claims to show someone attempting to steal an ATM and drag it onto a bus, purportedly during the recent unrest. In the video, the bus driver shuts the door before the man can load the ATM onto the bus.

Through a reverse image search of key frames, the Daily Caller discovered that the video is not from 2020. The video appears in March 2019 articles published by NJ 101.5, a local radio station, and the Daily Mail. Both articles describe the incident as a “prank” orchestrated by comedian Darius Kinney in New Jersey.

“The video was staged by a local comedian,” a Newark Police spokeswoman said to NJ 101.5. “The ATM was put out for trash and used to shoot the video.” (RELATED: Does This Video Show Protesters Breaking Into The White House?)

New Jersey Transit later posted the video on its Twitter account, asking followers to caption it, according to Newsweek. The video was later deleted.

“We asked our customers to caption the already posted video; we did not stage, post or film this video so we have no context around it. We are interacting with and engaging our customers based on something already circulating on social media,” a New Jersey Transit spokesperson said to Newsweek.

Kinney told Newsweek that the video was “really just a joke.” Other videos on Kinney’s Instagram show he has done similar pranks with ATMs in the past.

Elias Atienza

Senior Reporter
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