2012-03-29 / Local & State

Police Say False Rumors Led To Attack In Pa.

FALLS, Pa. (AP) – Police in in eastern Pennsylvania said false information about a child predator ended with a vigilante attack on an innocent man.

Authorities in Exeter Township, Berks County, said a man was assaulted and ended up in the hospital because he resembled the supposed stalker. His name wasn't released.

Police said unsubstantiated rumors started Sunday of a gray-haired man watching children from a van. That prompted a Facebook message sent far and wide.

District Attorney John Adams said a gray-haired man taking his evening walk was slammed to the ground Wednesday and suffered three broken ribs. Prosecutors said his attackers could face charges.

Police on Thursday said they identified the man who prompted neighbors' hysteria as a 76-year-old who picks up items left out for trash to sell at auctions.

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