2020 black lynching conspiracy theory

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Starting in June 2020 with the deaths of Robert Fuller and Malcolm Harsch, two black men whose hanged bodies "were discovered in two public venues, 10 days and 50 miles apart."[1], a conspiracy theory[2] began to spread on social media that a number of recent black men committing suicide by hanging were actually lynchings done by white supremacists.

Media attention[edit]

The conspiracy theory garnered attention in national media, including the New York Times[3] (the title referencing the "deaths of black men found hanging from trees"), CNN,[4] NBC[5] and others:

Common sense dissent was reserved for obscure pieces like Michelle Malkin's "The White Supremacist Lynching Hoax."[6]

Initial supposed victims[edit]

Social media frequently mentioned five victims, however one of the victims seems to have actually been white Hispanic and remains unnamed.[7]

Robert Fuller[edit]

Malcolm Harsch[edit]

Surveillance video captured Harsch killing himself by wrapping an HDMI cord around his neck, walking to a nearby tree, wrapping something around the branch and then his body dropping and disappearing from view as the branch bends.[8]

A spokesperson for Harsch's family conceded that "on behalf of the family of Malcolm Harsch unfortunately it seems he did take his own life."[9]

Dominique Alexander[edit]

TeTe Otis Gulley[edit]

Unnamed white Hispanic[edit]

On June 15, 2020 a viral video showed a dark body hanging from under a tree in Houston, TX:

Police investigation determined it was a white Hispanic man, and he committed suicide.[10]

Later supposed victims[edit]

Amanuel "Amani" Kildea[edit]