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Two BC Girls Mistakenly Accused a Man Reading a Newspaper of Being A Pedophile

Their Facebook post caused a 'frenzy' and led to an innocent man being detained at a grocery store.

Two Trail, BC girls mistakenly identified a man they saw at a restaurant as a "pedophile" on Facebook, causing the townsfolk to lose their shit. The girls, aged 12 and 13, posted a photo of the man on Facebook because they believed he was acting suspiciously and taking photographs of them. The post, "stirred up a bit of a frenzy," RCMP Cpl. Devon Reid told the CBC, and the man's daughter eventually came across it and informed authorities. But when cops investigated, they found the man had done nothing wrong and was in fact just reading the newspaper with his phone out. "There was a lot of misinformation shared and by the time everyone shared it, it was like a broken telephone game," Reid said. Despite the post being taken offline, cops say the damage was done. The attention it garnered led staff at a local grocery store to detain a customer they believed was the man from the post. They held him until police showed up and confirmed the customer done nothing wrong, and that the man from the Facebook post was also entirely innocent. "It was a non-criminal event, what he was doing was definitely not illegal and posting it to Facebook when you don't have all the facts can make things worse," Reid said. Ironically, the two girls are now facing backlash for their mistake, according to police, although they did not give specifics. There is a growing network of self-described pedophile hunters across the country who confront people they believe to be child predators. However, police advise against this tactic, arguing the vigilantes don't fully understand the law and could be putting themselves at risk. Follow Manisha Krishnan on Twitter.