A Facebook user claiming to be Ryan Lanza, the brother of Adam, who gunned down 27 people and himself Dec. 14, posted messages on the social networking website mourning the victims in the Newtown, Conn. school shooting.
However, it all turned out to be a hoax.
According to The New York Post, a Facebook user named Ryan Lanza interviewed with the newspaper about his brother's involvement in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, where 20-year-old Adam Lanza took the lives of 20 children, six adults, his mother and himself.
"I am a victim," Ryan Lanza told the New York Post Saturday via Facebook. "I [lost] my mom and brother."
The statement came after Ryan Lanza posted photos of his brother and mother on Facebook Saturday, with the message:
"R.I.P Adam Peter Lanza April 22, 1992- Dec. 14, 2012(20 years old) 'I will miss you bro. I will always love you as long as I live' -Ryan"
However, a spokesperson for the Lanza family clarified that the message was a Facebook hoax and not the real 24-year-old Ryan Lanza, who lives in Hoboken, N.J. "An imposter is behind Ryan Lanza's Facebook page and that Ryan did not post the messages," that were included in the New York Post's original story. The Facebook account in question that turned out to be a hoax was at http://www.facebook.com/Official.RyanLanza01.
The real Ryan Lanza's Facebook account is private but dozens of fake accounts and group pages have sprung about in the wake of the shooting.
Meanwhile, Yahoo News reported Facebook users were attacking the fake Ryan Lanza account after the messages were posted. One user wrote that Ryan Lanza deserved to "rot in Hell" for his brother's hand in the massacre.
“I am so tired of people blaming me for something my brother did. I love Adam, his [sic] my brother,” the message from the fake Facebook read.
“But you have no right to call my brother names when he isn’t here no more. Just let my brother rest in peace. Please. Respect that.”