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No, tainted candy has not been confirmed in West Michigan

After a 13 ON YOUR SIDE VERIFY, police made contact with the mother who made the viral post. She has now handed off the piece of candy to them, Battle Creek PD said.

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. — UPDATE: While this story was airing on 13 ON YOUR SIDE at 5 p.m., the Battle Creek police reached out to the Verify Team to say the mother finally connected with them. Due to this advancement, the original question has been edited to include if police have confirmed the candy being tainted. 

A viral social media post is making waves online — with parents worrying about Halloween safety. Battle Creek mother Heidi said that she found a metal screw inside her kid's Three Musketeers bar after they went trick or treating

As of Monday at 5:30 p.m., the Facebook post currently had more than 110,000 shares, thousands of reactions and hundreds of comments. 

Legitimate reports of contaminated Halloween candy are best understood as contemporary legends or urban myths, sociologists said. But it isn't impossible. 

THE QUESTION

Was tainted Halloween candy reported and confirmed in Battle Creek?

THE SOURCES

  • Deputy Chief Troy Gilleylen, Battle Creek Police Department 
  • Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office
  • Grand Rapids Police Department 
  • Kent County Sheriff’s Office

THE ANSWER

This is false.

No, we can verify that tainted candy has not been confirmed in Battle Creek or other nearby towns. After 13 ON YOUR SIDE'S report, police said the mother filed a report with the department. 

WHAT WE FOUND

With 110,000 shares in less than one day, the post captured the eyes of not just the West Michigan community, but all over the country. Deputy Chief Gilleylen’s team was surprised when 13 ON YOUR SIDE asked about this specific post because they hadn’t received any reports yet, nor did they know about it. 

"It's actually very rare for us," Gilleylen said. "As a matter of fact, this particular incident, that mother has failed to contact us as of yet, and that this can be frustrating for local law enforcement."

Numerous commenters asked in the morning if the mother called the police, but Heidi didn’t respond. Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office, Grand Rapids Police and Kent County Sheriff’s Office didn't have a single report, either. 

"People think that they're being helpful by posting things on Facebook," he added. "It does better to contact your local police department as well so that an investigation can be done."

Gilleylen said this is not to say that the mother is making this up, it is possible this happened. However, not reporting it to law enforcement won’t get to the crux of the issue. They have a system to help solve this case. 

First, police can localize the area and talk to different houses to see what candy people were giving out. The other important step is to get the wrapper to look for fingerprints. They may be able to look at the candy's serial number as well and see where it was bought. Investigators also have a way to validate the legitimacy of the photos from social media.

"The main thing for us is that when it does happen, we need to be on top of it, we need to investigate it, we need to verify it, and need to keep our community safe," he said.

   

The VERIFY team works to separate fact from fiction so that you can understand what is true and false. Please consider subscribing to our daily newsletter, text alerts and our YouTube channel. You can also follow us on Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and TikTok. Learn More »

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