Fact Check

Woman Arrested for Training Squirrels to Attack Her Ex-Boyfriend?

Reports that a woman was arrested for training squirrels to attack her ex-boyfriend are fake news.

Published April 3, 2017

Image courtesy of Shutterstock
A woman was arrested for training squirrels to attack her ex-boyfriend.

On 31 March 2017, the World News Daily Report (WNDR) web site published an article appearing to report that a 43-year-old woman named Janice Smith was arrested for training squirrels to attack her ex-boyfriend:

45-year old Janice Smith was arrested this morning by officers of the Detroit Police Department, for allegedly capturing numerous squirrels and training them to attack her former lover.

The victim, 51-year old James Robinson, was presumably attacked by the rodents on more than a dozen occasions over the last month.

There was no truth to the story. World News Daily Report is a well known fake news site with a long history of publishing fictional stories. The web site also bears a disclaimer noting that all of its content is satirical:

WNDR assumes however all responsibility for the satirical nature of its articles and for the fictional nature of their content. All characters appearing in the articles in this website – even those based on real people – are entirely fictional and any resemblance between them and any persons, living, dead, or undead is purely a miracle.

The supposed mug shot of "Janice Smith" that accompanied the article is actually a photograph of Maryland woman Michelle Waro, who was arrested in 2014 for throwing bricks through her father-in-law's windows. A second mugshot of Waro was released by the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office:


World News Daily Report.   "Woman Arrested for Training Squirrels to Attack Her Ex-Boyfriend."     31 March 2017.

South Maryland News Net.   "UPDATE: Woman Arrested After Throwing Bricks at Windows 'Because It Was Fun!'"     13 August 2014.

Bleier, Evan.   "Maryland Woman Arrested for Breaking Father-in-Law's Windows Because It 'Was Fun.'"     UPI.   12 August 2014.

Dan Evon is a former writer for Snopes.