Canadian shooting victim harassed online
A B.C. man who survived after he was shot in the head in the Las Vegas massacre is being tormented online.
Like many of the victims saddled with U.S. medical bills and unexpected travel costs after the shooting, Braden Matejka from Lake Country, near Kelowna, started a GoFundMe campaign with a goal of $25,000.
He says on the page that the money will help cover his required time off work and other recovery costs after being shot in the back of the head.
But things quickly turned hateful, and he has become the target of online bullying, threats, and accusations of being part of a conspiracy.
Matejka has removed his Facebook site, but his brother Taylor Matejka shared screenshots of the abuse with The Guardian. One particularly nasty commenter called Matejka a liar, saying,
“I hope someone truly shoots you in the head.”
The posts allege Matejka is a crisis actor and that the tragedy was a hoax. Some posts spew misinformation and abuse. Twitter users also claimed the shooting was fake.
Taylor Matejka told The Guardian on Thursday that families of victims of the shooting, which happened Oct. 1 at a concert in Las Vegas, are dealing with the most horrific thing they will likely ever experience, yet are being met with hate and anger online.
Many Twitter users, however, have come to the defence of Matejka, condemning the online abuse as insensitive.
On Oct. 1, lone gunman Stephen Paddock opened fire at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, killing 58 people and injuring hundreds more.