CLAIM

A hiker stumbled across a scary "shrine" made out of missing persons posters. See Example( s )

EXAMPLES
Collected via e-mail, October 2016

There is a video circulating on Facebook from the New York Post stating a man found a scene in the middle of the woods with 'missing' posters posted around a site and a 'human-like' structure in the middle. The video was supposedly turned over to NYC Police and they are currently investigating the situation.
FALSE

RATING

FALSE

ORIGIN

On 3 October 2016, in a story ripe for Halloween, hiker James Rankin was enjoying outdoor activities at Long Island’s Berkeley Jackson County Park when he found a group of trees in a small valley with missing persons posters taped to them. In the middle of the trees, he came upon a strange pattern of branches lashed together symmetrically.

It is clear Rankin believes he had found a hot spot for some seriously criminal activity: In the video, the clearly shaken, knife-wielding hiker tramps through the site while filming, focusing his camera on various missing posters and other findings.  The video was viewed and shared thousands of times on social media:

However, Suffolk County police told us they don’t suspect any wrongdoing. A spokeswoman said that Rankin stumbled onto someone’s Halloween party setup: 

The man was on private property and the owners had set up for a Halloween.

That explanation did not appease Rankin, who still seemed suspicious:

What I wanna know is, if these were “Halloween party” decorations, why have they been hanging there for weeks or months? Because it was plainly obvious that the stuff had been there for quite a while, and not set up recently. That’s clearly the case as seen in the videos. Seems to me they’re just using the time of year as an excuse (just my opinion).

Also gotta wonder just what sort of person thinks it’s OK to use real missing persons posters of people’s lost loved ones as party decor.

EDIT: I’ve been told through the grapevine that supposedly the residents of the adjacent property will soon be erecting fences and posting “No Trespassing” signs.

The posters come from various parts of the country and do describe real-life missing persons cases — however, it is likely safe to assume the party planners were not expecting the decor to find its way into international news.

Police, meanwhile, have quickly closed their investigation, having found no evidence of misdeeds, let alone serial killer activities or supernatural abductions.