Texas man faces charges for fake coronavirus post

TEXARKANA, Tx. (KSLA/WVLT) -- A Texas man was charged for allegedly posting a fake post about coronavirus on social media.

Jimmie Hock, 39, of Texarkana, Texas was charged with creating a false alarm or report, KSLA reported.

Police said that Hock created a fake Facebook post on Sunday that appeared to be from a legitimate news source, claiming that a case of COVID-19 tested positive in the Bowie County Jail Annex.

KSLA reported that many people were alarmed, and some jail employees said they would not report to work due to the virus.

“This went far beyond a casual comment or post on social media. He intentionally tried to make this look like a real news story," said Chief Kevin Schutte, in a news release. "He wanted to mislead and scare people who are already incredibly nervous about the COVID-19 virus. Given those fears right now, this was basically the same thing as someone yelling “fire” in a theater. Hopefully, this will serve as a warning to anyone else who might think of doing something like this in the future.”

KSLA reported that Hock got out of jail on a $5,000 bond Wednesday afternoon.

Copyright 2020 WVLT News via KSLA. All rights reserved.