An 18-year-old from Denison, Texas, revealed to police on Wednesday that she lied about being abducted and raped — and some of the media coverage regarding her crime has drawn outrage.
Once she revealed she lied people were naturally upset, but one Twitter user pointed out another injustice in the story.
As the story broke, @GlamorGhoul tweeted in regards to the above news story:
She wasn't the only one asking this question:
GlamorGhoul was referring to missing Washington, D.C., teenager Chareah Payne:
Payne has been represented by the media with a mug shot, whereas Talbott - who was charged with making a false report and has a mug shot, too - has been largely represented by her own photos.
Talbott "burst into a church" on March 8 "bleeding and wearing only a shirt, bra and underwear.
She said that three black men in ski masks had kidnapped her," The Washington Post reports. Denison Texas Police Department posted a press release on its official Facebook account on Wednesday with more details of the case.
"The Denison Police Department has determined that the alleged abduction and sexual assault case reported on March 8, 2017 was a hoax," according to the release. "The so-called victim in the case confessed to the hoax last evening (March 21) to a member of the investigative team working the case."
As they further explain, "she told witnesses at the church she had been kidnapped and sexually assaulted in the woods behind the church. There were also visible cuts and/or scratches on her body ... She claimed the suspects took her in a black SUV to a wooded area nearby where 2 suspects raped her while the 3rd suspect held her down." Talbott later confessed to lying about the incident, including staging her church entrance and self-inflicting her wounds.
Talbott's claim "caught the attention of far right websites," The Washington Post reports, who hailed her as a victim and used her story to further its own agenda:
"We have mixed emotions on a case like this. We're happy it didn't occur, but there could be permanent damage as a result — a damage of relationships within our community, damage to the reputation of our community," Denison Police Chief Jay Burch told The Herald Democrat.
But the damage Talbott has done extends beyond her own community. As blogger Mike P. Williams tweeted, "This is beyond disturbing. Not to mention despicably racist. And offensive to real rape victims."