Verify: Debunking Halloween urban legends

Verify: Debunking Halloween urban legends

Halloween is full of scares and spooky stories. But our VERIFY team wants you to be wary of a couple holiday urban legends.

People poisoning the candy.

For this one, we went to Joel Best, a professor of Sociology and Criminal Justice at the University of Delaware.

He's tracked this information for nearly 60 years and he can only find one case of a child being poisoned by Halloween candy. It happened in Pasadena, Texas in 1974. The boy's father is the one who poisoned him and was executed for it ten years later.

So we can VERIFY this one is false.

Still, there's no harm in checking the candy.

Black cat sacrifices

This one is a common one on social media. The fear is that people are adopting black cats to torture or sacrifice for the holiday.

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals addressed this on its website saying, "There is no reason to believe that these cats are at risk. While it is true that animals too often become the victims of holiday pranks and cruelty, there is no reason to believe that witches are involved, or that shelters are a source."

We can VERIFY this one is also false.

Sources:
Joel Best, Professor, University of Delaware 
ASPCA 

© 2017 WFAA-TV


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