Hate Crime Hoax: Michigan Snowflake Scratched Own Face with 'Safe Space' Safety Pin
A 21-year-old woman from Ann Arbor, Michigan, pleaded guilty to making a false report after she fabricated a fake hate crime following the election of President Trump.
Halley Bass originally told the police that a strange man had pricked her face with a pin in downtown Ann Arbor on Nov. 15., but in reality, she had scratched herself with her own "safe space" safety pin after "becoming upset" in her women's literature class at the University of Michigan.
"I was suffering from depression at the time," Bass told Judge Elizabeth Pollard Hines. "I made a superficial scratch on my face. It was visible and I was embarrassed about what I'd done. So I made up a story and told a friend that a stranger had done it while I was walking. I was encouraged to report it to the police. I made the mistake of doing that."
Enter Ann Arbor police Detective Robin Lee and Special Agent Sean Nicol of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, who questioned Bass at the Ann Arbor Police Department on November 17.
Bass told them that she was targeted for wearing a "solidarity pin" (a show of opposition to President Trump and a signal to other liberals that she is a "safe space"). The idea was started by the losing side of Great Britain's "Brexit" vote and adopted by American snowflakes after Trump's election victory.
She said her safety pin "was to show, yeah, solidarity with the people like we show your fear and we want to help you get through it."
Bass also claimed that the attack was part of the alleged surge in hate crimes following the election of Donald Trump a week earlier.
"I've heard of other people experiencing incidents recently, but not to me," she told police investigators.
According to the police report, Bass cited the case of a hijab-wearing Muslim woman who said a man threatened to light her on fire if she didn't take it off. That one -- shocker -- also turned out to be a hoax, although the woman who reported that fake crime was not prosecuted.
Bass described the suspect as an approximately 45-year-old white male, with stubble on his face, wearing a black baseball hat pulled low over his face, a gray hoodie with the hood down and sweat pants.
She has now admitted to making up the suspect.
Bass posted about the attack on Facebook the same day she reported the attack to the police, according to the report.
Bass later told detectives she wrote the post to convey "that all people are equal and deserve to have their voice heard and not feel endangered."
Detective pointed out her post had a dozen shares and more than 100 likes.
"It blew up a little bit more than I meant to," she said about the post.