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Claim: New York Jets quarterback Michael Vick was attacked by a stray pitbull.
Example:[Collected via Facebook, April 2014]
I just read that Michael Vick was attacked by a stray pit bull. Is this true or false?
Origins: On 23 March 2014, the News Nerd web site published an article positing that New York Jets quarterback Michael Vick had been attacked by a stray pitbull after visiting with management at the Jets' home field, MetLife Stadium:
In a bit of an ironic scenario, New York Jets football player Michael Vick was attacked by a pitbull as he left MetLife Stadium this Saturday (March 22, 2014).
The 34-year-old quarterback was leaving the stadium after visiting with his new team’s management, when a stray pitbull suddenly darted towards him. Onlookers say the dog gave chase as Vick attempted to use some of his classic juke moves to avoid it. Unswayed by Vick’s attempts to elude him, the dog locked onto his left thigh. The dog shook violently back and forth while locked on to Vick’s leg.
Michael Vick has been the subject of extensive news coverage, public opprobrium, and a good deal of satire since he was indicted in June 2007 on charges related to his participation in a dogfighting ring that executed underperforming pit bulls by hanging, electrocution, drowning, shooting, and other brutal means. He pleaded guilty to
federal felony charges and served 21 months in prison, after which he resumed his career as a quarterback in the NFL. Since then he has been featured in a number of Internet-circulated spoofs, typically japes that either ironically portray him as a protector of pit bulls or the hapless victim of attacks by members of that breed.
The item cited above, from the latter category, is one that many readers soon mistook for a reporting of real news. However, it was just another spoof from News Nerd, whose stock in trade is publishing fantastically fictional stories (such as a recent account of a fight between singers Patti Labelle and Aretha Franklin). As the The News Nerd site's disclaimer states, all of its material is satirical in nature:
The stories posted on TheNewsNerd are for entertainment purposes only. The stories may mimic articles found in the headlines, but rest assured they are purely satirical.