A false report of a serial killer on the loose in Palm Springs circulated on Facebook Monday.

The social media post stated that the Palm Springs Police Department was investigating a serial killer specifically targeting members of the LGBTQ community in downtown Palm Springs, but department officials on Monday said none of that information is true.

“We do not have knowledge of any such threat, and we do not know the source of this information,” the police department posted on Facebook.

The original poster had been found but “went silent” after being reached out to by officials. The original post has since been taken down but not before it could be shared by multiple people on social media, according to Lt. William Hutchinson.

Those who had posted the information were contacted by police to voluntarily remove the posts.

“We understand and appreciate those users who wanted to help. However, this information is simply untrue,” the department stated on Facebook.

“If the Palm Springs Police Department had knowledge of an imminent threat to our community, that information would be posted to all of our media outlets and officers would be deployed to assist with law enforcement efforts.”

Hutchinson said that spreading false information isn’t a crime, and thus no actions can be taken against the individual.

The scenario would be different if the false information were something along the lines of “falsely yelling fire in a movie theater,” that would pose immediate danger to others, Hutchinson said.

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