This Californian woman's ordeal was caused by a fake memorial page set up on Facebook to commemorate the death of her son. Thankfully, her 7-year-old son, Javier, was alive and well, but this cruel joke put her through hell.
Patricia Quintana's friends and family called and sent messages to pay their respect. "So many people said “I’m sorry he passed away,” she said to the Daily Mail
, angry and confused.
The Facebook page featured pictures and videos of her son, some quite personal, and had already received 10,000 likes. When a user realized the page was a hoax, its creator tried to evade responsibility by saying it was all a misunderstanding.
He then succeeded to make matters even worse, as he changed the About section and stated the little boy was hospitalized, which was, of course, also untrue.
The boy felt terrified and didn't know what was going on around him.
“All the people were crying just because everybody thinks I’m dead. I feel scared,” he said.
The police discovered that two teens were behind the page, a 14-year-old girl and a 13-year-old boy. The girl had joked about Javier dying in an accident in a conversation with the boy, so he created a memorial page for him.
She then learned about the memorial and asked him to take it down, but the page already had a life of its own.
Other people were creating similar pages and replying, and the boy couldn't stop this phenomenon.
Mrs. Quintana believed there was criminal intent behind this cruel joke, and filed a report with the local police. Police Sergeant Jeff Stuart of the Orange County PD interviewed the boy and reported he appeared repentant, claiming this was neither a hoax nor an attempt to hurt the Quintana family, but an unfortunate mishap.
Little Javier wanted to reassure everybody that he is, in fact, not dead:
‘I am alive and I’m fine… I don’t know why they put it, but I just feel bad for that,” he said, after a confusing and difficult time.
No charges have been made against the teens.