Fact check: Altered video falsely claims to show jubilant reaction to Rittenhouse verdict in a bar

·4 min read

The claim: A video shows people reacting to Kyle Rittenhouse’s acquittal at a bar in Wisconsin

A jury found 18-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse not guilty on all counts Nov. 19 after he killed two people and injured another during racial justice protests last summer in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

As protests took place in major cities in response to the verdict, a video emerged on social media purporting to show a crowd erupting in cheers at a Wisconsin bar as a jury found Rittenhouse not guilty on all charges, which ranged from intentional homicide to reckless endangerment.

“Meanwhile, at a bar in Wisconsin,” reads the caption of a Nov. 19 Facebook video that accumulated more than 5,000 views and 200 reactions in less than a week.

The same video was shared to Twitter on Nov. 19 in a post that generated more than 16,000 likes with the caption, “YES! NOT GUILTY!”

While some people in the responses pointed out red flags about the video, other users perceived the clip to be authentic writing, “This makes me very, very happy,” and,“Chokes me up every time I watch this.”

But the video has been altered using footage from 2016 in England during the Union of European Football Associations championship game. The video has been previously debunked by fact-check organizations and is often misused on social media.

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The Facebook user who shared the video did not return a request for comment.

Video was manipulated

The video in question was originally uploaded to YouTube on June 16, 2016, and it shows sports fans reacting to a goal made by then-Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge during a soccer match between England and Wales. Footage from the Rittenhouse trial was superimposed onto the large television screen in the clip.

“Fans watching Euro 2016 on the big screen at Ashton Gate stadium celebrate Daniel Sturridge's late winner for England against Wales,” reads the caption of the 40-second video on YouTube from Heart News West Country, a radio station based in the United Kingdom.

Similar versions of the video were shared that same year by British news outlets including BBC West, Bristol Sport and ITV. Ashton Gate Stadium has also shared images and videos of fans celebrating at the bar over the years.

Since the video first went viral years ago, it has been used by various sports accounts such as the NBA and the UFC to make memes about sports events. In 2020, a “green screen meme template” was shared to YouTube.

Fact check: No evidence bricks placed in Kenosha for planned unrest after Rittenhouse verdict

The Agence France-Presse debunked the video in October when it was manipulated to show people cheering while watching an Australian politician's announcement of resignation. In March, the clip was doctored to show President Joe Biden tripping on stairs on the screen.

Our rating: Altered

Based on our research, we rate ALTERED a video purportedly showing people reacting to Rittenhouse’s verdict at a bar in Wisconsin. The footage originates from June 2016 when fans in England celebrated a soccer win. The television screen seen in the video has been repeatedly altered over the years and shared to social media.

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: Video does not show people reacting to Rittenhouse verdict

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