Fact Check

93-Year-Old Grandma Kills 'Knockout Game' Thug

Fake news reported hat a 93-year-old woman shot and killed one of a group of thugs who were attempting to make her a 'knockout game' victim.

Published Nov 27, 2013

Claim:   A 93-year-old woman shot and killed one of a group of thugs who were attempting to make her a "knockout game" victim.


Example:   [Collected via e-mail, November 2013]

I've seen stories posted on facebook about a 93-year-old woman shooting and killing someone who hit her while playing that horrible knockout game. The only places I found this story when searching the internet were a few right-leaning news sources. Both name the woman as Gladis Bennett and that she shot her attacker in the head and killed him. It just rings false to me. Any clue if this one is true?


Origins:   On 25 November 2013, as news outlets were reporting the supposed spread of knockout game incidents in the U.S. (a "game" in which youngsters sucker-punch random strangers and attempt to knock them unconscious), the National Report published an article reporting that a 93-year-old woman named Gladis Bennett shot and killed one of a group of thugs who were attempting to make her a victim of their knockout game efforts:

"I was waiting at the bus stop and suddenly felt this sharp pain to the left side of my body. The blunt force was so strong that it knocked me down. When I looked up I could see a group of thugs laughing at me. Then one of them started kicking me. So before they had a chance to do more harm, I reached in my purse, pulled out my gun and shot the main aggressor. Luckily they all ran after that. I was terrified. I thought they were going to kill me."

51-year-old Knoshon Mootron a homeless man from St. Louis who witnessed the attack told reporters that Bennett acted like a superhero. "I saw her get sucker punched from behind, hard. She hit the ground, then they all start kicking her, she grabs this huge gun out of her purse and BOOM! Headshot! Game over son, ya know what I'm sayin'?"

By the following day links and excerpts referencing this article were being circulated via social media, with many of those who encountered the item mistaking it for a genuine news article. However, the article was just a bit of fake news from the National Report, a clickbait fake news site that publishes outrageous fictional stories such as "IRS Plans to Target Leprechauns Next," "Boy Scouts Announce Boobs Merit Badge," and "New CDC Study Indicates Pets of Gay Couples Worse at Sports, Better at Fashion Than Pets of Straight Couples."

The National Report's disclaimer page notes that:

National Report is a news and political satire web publication, which may or may not use real names, often in semi-real or mostly fictitious ways. All news articles contained within National Report are fiction, and presumably fake news. Any resemblance to the truth is purely coincidental.

This article echoed a similar fictional piece about a 60-year-old woman named Beulah Montgomery that had been circulating on the Internet at the same time.

Last updated:   5 February 2016

David Mikkelson founded the site now known as snopes.com back in 1994.

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