Detroit News Station Caught in the Middle of Election Disinformation

By Stephanie Tsoflias Siegel 

Detroit’s ABC station, WXYZ, has found itself embroiled in false claims of voter fraud after one of their photojournalists was accused of acting nefariously.

A conservative site published a video of a WXYZ photojournalist loading his gear into a wagon outside of the TCF Center, a convention center where votes are being counted. The website falsely claimed it was evidence of someone hauling away ballots — and investigative reporter Ross Jones has tried to set the record straight.

“A conservative ‘news’ site reports catching a man wheeling in ‘suspicious’ equipment to the Detroit convention center, implying it was used to steal ballots,” Jones tweeted. The ‘ballot thief’ was my photographer. He was bringing down equipment for our 12-hour shift.”


The photographer had an innocuous reason for the wagon. “Our photographer said he needed a wagon because the shots were downstairs at TCF Center,” the station said in an article. “He found the wagon in his shed.” Reporter Brett Kast shared an image of the wagon, where the equipment’s carrying case and a station bumper sticker is visible.

Despite the debunking, the false claims still took off across the internet. It made rounds among conservative media figures, and at one point President Donald Trump’s son Eric Trump retweeted it.

The station won’t share the video, because they don’t want to fuel the fire. “We are not sharing the video in this story because it is false and we do not want to further spread false information,” they said.