THIBODAUX, La. – The Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office has stepped in to clear up rumors that have been swirling around social media sites concerning small stickers and dots of paint on cars.
According to the rumors, which have generated significant concern both online and in the real world, sex traffickers are using stickers and other markers to identify the vehicles of people they plan to target.
In a Facebook post beginning with the words “RUMOR CONTROL,” the LPSO attempts to quell the growing concern.
“The white stickers on vehicle windshields are commonly used by companies providing services at automobile dealerships,” according to the post. “There is currently NO intelligence or evidence to suggest these dots and stickers are being used by sex traffickers.”
Stickers and small dots of paint are often placed on cars by service companies while the cars are at the dealership to signify that the car has already been photographed.
The sheriff’s office has contacted local car dealerships to confirm the innocuous use of the stickers.
The markers are often small and inconspicuous enough to go without notice until pointed out, according to the Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre.
“We have received calls from several concerned citizens after finding a sticker on their vehicle after reading the rumor on social media,” Webre said. “The reality is the sticker or dot is inconspicuous enough that you likely haven’t noticed it. While we have found the source of this rumor, we are not suggesting anyone let your guard down. All citizens would be wise to be cautious and aware of your surroundings at all times, especially when you are with your family, and especially during the holiday shopping season ahead. We’re simply informing you there is no evidence to suggest there is any truth to these rumors.”
The department has been employing a wide variety of memes and gifs to respond to comments from hundreds of people, many of whom are incredibly skeptical or flat out deny the sheriff’s explanation.