A 17-year-old survivor of the Florida school shooting has been getting death threats from 'crisis actor' conspiracy theorists, his family has revealed.
David Hogg, of Parkland, Florida, was one of the students who managed to cheat death on 14 February when a gunman opened fire and killed 17 others at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. David has since spoken out on TV in support of massive changes to gun laws in the United States.
Some people believe, however, that David is a crisis actor and is being "coached" throughout these appearances. According to Newsweek, the accusations were first spread on 4chan and eventually received wide-spread notoriety after Donald Trump Jr liked a tweet targeting David.
The aspiring broadcast jounalist rebuffed the claims on CNN while being interviewed by Anderson Cooper. "I'm not a crisis actor... I'm someone who had to witness this and live through this and I continue to be having to do that," David said.
His mother, Rebecca Boldrick, told the Washington Post that her family had received several death threats. "I'm under so much stress," Boldrick said. "I'm angry and exhausted. Angry, exhausted and extremely proud."
Boldrick is a primary school teacher.
Some of the conspiracy theories against David have been published as videos on YouTube. Google has since issued a statement after it removed some of the videos. "We recognise that the challenging issues presented by hoax videos and the pain they can cause the families who have suffered these incredibly tragic losses."
According to Business Insider, another 17-year-old who survived the shooting ended up deleting his Facebook account over death threats from "NRA cultists". Cameron Kasky tweeted that he was taking a break from Facebook.
"Temporarily got off Facebook because there's no character count so the death threats from the @NRA cultists are a bit more graphic than those on Twitter. Will be back when I have the time for it. Busy getting my feelings hurt by fellow teenagers at Br**tb*rt."