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A few years ago my surname MURTAUGH started to appear in various movie and tv productions. It has happened and still happens a LOT. I know of at least 8 movies and a dozen tv show where my surname appears.

Ordinarily this would be something to use as an interesting ice breaker at parties or something to use as bragging rights. The problem, in my case, is this has become something of a problem.

A few years ago, mainly because of the Leathal Weapon movie franchise, some internet trolls started posting claims that I was impersonating a US Marshall. They apparently got the idea for this rumor from the movie series. 

In another case, a photo of someone wearing a military uniform with the MURTAUGH name patch appeared on my Facebook page. It was from a movie but someone posted it there as if I was claiming to be in the military. Facebook eventually removed it at my request.

Rather than put two and two together, people who read these posts believed the rumors and expanded upon them. Recently a conspiracy theorist by the name of Timothy C Holmseth has used this same claim to attack me once again.

Slowly people are beginning to realize how these rumors got started but this fact somehow escaped Timothy Holmseth and others like him. It is a common fact that rumors get started the same way fish stories do.

The fish gets bigger and the circumstances more embellished each time the story is passed on. This sort of thing has even hit the mainstream media and is referred to as “Fake News.”

The reason these stories proliferate and gain creadability is that the readers and audience do not take the time to fact check to see where the information came from. If they bothered to do so, they would be shocked to find how out of control the rumors have become.

In the hands of an abusive blogger, having one’s name being used in a movie can have inintended and disasterous consequences.