Police: Misinformation in message causes witch hunt

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Barre Town police are comparing misinformation circulated about a man who had lost his dog to the Salem witch trials.

Town Police Chief Michael Stevens says the man seen driving around town last week really had lost his dog.

But reports began circulating by e-mail that the man who was seen driving slowly near school bus stops had been identified by police as a threat. The e-mail messages published the man’s license plate number and warned parents to watch out for him.

Police say they never considered the man a threat and the reports bogged down the department.

Stevens says concerned people want to help, but this was, as he put it, over the top.

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