No danger found: Oktibbeha County sheriff responds to viral post

Credit: MGN

The Oktibbeha County Sheriff’s Department issued a statement on Friday in response to a viral social media post.

Posted: Sep 17, 2021 3:10 PM

STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA) - The Oktibbeha County Sheriff’s Department issued a statement on Friday in response to a viral social media post.

Below is a copy of the full response.

On 09/16/2021, Deputies of the OCSD responded to the Retreats Apartments in Oktibbeha County for a call of a teddy bear found on a front porch. The Reporting Party told Deputies that she had found the bear and then spoke to a friend, who told her that she had seen the same thing happening around the Starkville area. Allegedly the bears were laced with Fentanyl and were a sign that the apartment/person was being watched, possibly by Human Traffickers. Deputies took possession of the Teddy Bear. Subsequently, the story was posted on social media by community members and has since gone viral.

THE INVESTIGATION SO FAR:

It has been determined that the Teddy Bear was NOT laced with any type of dangerous substance. OCSD Deputies spoke with the person who had stated that she had seen this information on SNAPCHAT. The person was unable to provide information regarding the person/person posting the SNAPCHAT or location of any other incidents. The OCSD reached out to surrounding agencies and determined that there were no other such incidents reported in Oktibbeha County, the City of Starkville or Mississippi State University as of 0800 hours this morning. Internet searches by Investigators were unable to locate any such instances of Human Traffickers utilizing this ruse.

At approximately 1000 hours this morning 09/17/2021, the original Reporting Party reached out to the Sheriff’s Department and stated that a neighbor had admitted to placing the bear near her apartment. Deputies were able to confirm this with the neighbor. The investigation has shown that there was no malice intended and the placement of the bear was not meant to harass or intimidate anyone.

At approximately 1030 hours, a second complaint was filed in the same apartment complex. Deputies recovered a second Teddy Bear. The Reporting Party stated that it had been found at approximately 0630 hours this am. None of the Report Party’s roommates had ever seen the bear prior to the reporting time. This Teddy Bear was also NOT laced with any dangerous substances.

While the investigation into the matter continues, Investigators have found no evidence that this instance is anything other than a copycat hoax. If anyone has any other information on this incident please contact the OCSD at 662-323-2421 or the OCSD Investigations Unit at 662-324-8484.

As always, the best advice is to remain vigilant and aware of your surroundings at all time. Pay attention to people near you especially at night. As always if you believe you are in danger do not hesitate to call for law enforcement.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 497379

Reported Deaths: 9907
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison34085530
DeSoto31806398
Hinds31796621
Jackson24303377
Rankin21852387
Lee15413233
Madison14513278
Jones13770241
Forrest13401250
Lauderdale11936314
Lowndes10908184
Lamar10461135
Pearl River9428237
Lafayette8450137
Hancock7690126
Washington7361156
Oktibbeha7110129
Monroe6713173
Warren6635175
Neshoba6606204
Pontotoc6603101
Panola6458131
Marshall6378132
Bolivar6264145
Union595194
Pike5780152
Alcorn5630100
Lincoln5416134
George490479
Scott470698
Tippah464981
Prentiss464181
Leflore4626143
Itawamba4590104
Adams4570119
Tate4539109
Copiah444691
Simpson4419116
Wayne438572
Yazoo437586
Covington427194
Sunflower4215104
Marion4206107
Coahoma4114104
Leake407287
Newton380879
Grenada3691108
Stone358264
Tishomingo355991
Attala330189
Jasper328065
Winston312891
Clay305875
Chickasaw296567
Clarke290294
Calhoun277645
Holmes266587
Smith262550
Yalobusha232347
Tallahatchie225251
Walthall217663
Greene215448
Lawrence211140
Perry204555
Amite203454
Webster201645
Noxubee184940
Montgomery178956
Jefferson Davis170642
Carroll167338
Tunica158539
Benton147038
Kemper141241
Choctaw133026
Claiborne131037
Humphreys128838
Franklin119128
Quitman106227
Wilkinson104339
Jefferson94234
Sharkey64020
Issaquena1937
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 811551

Reported Deaths: 15101
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1138721885
Mobile720161315
Madison51829685
Shelby37203339
Baldwin37018538
Tuscaloosa34853599
Montgomery33879718
Lee23097239
Calhoun22095468
Morgan20584368
Etowah19727496
Marshall18224298
Houston17270405
St. Clair15884337
Cullman15257289
Limestone15177197
Elmore14944283
Lauderdale14060294
Talladega13653270
DeKalb12530258
Walker11055363
Blount10071174
Autauga9874146
Jackson9760177
Coffee9171188
Dale8850180
Colbert8768200
Tallapoosa7028194
Escambia6714127
Covington6661179
Chilton6571160
Russell623458
Franklin5926105
Chambers5553142
Marion4942126
Dallas4848199
Clarke472681
Pike4713105
Geneva4557126
Winston4456101
Lawrence4247116
Bibb421186
Barbour355274
Marengo333889
Monroe329062
Randolph324663
Butler323694
Pickens313479
Henry310365
Hale308586
Cherokee299257
Fayette289779
Washington250850
Cleburne245758
Crenshaw243075
Clay238867
Macon229862
Lamar214846
Conecuh185051
Coosa177338
Lowndes173061
Wilcox166738
Bullock151744
Perry137940
Sumter130738
Greene125344
Choctaw86527
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A cold front passing through our area overnight will bring into our area some of the coolest temperatures of the season so far. We will see most of the highs this weekend only in the upper 60s to lower 70s. While overnight lows will drop off down into the 40s Saturday night.
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