Flag burning photo misinterpreted, woman becomes target
SALISBURY, Md. – It’s been a tough week for Sommer Asay after learning that her address has been linked to a viral Facebook post of a former Salisbury resident, Brendin Bossle, appearing to burn the American flag.
“I immediately had it reported. Had friends report it and took it down. I called the sheriff’s department to let them know,” said Asay.
The photo was taken years ago and resurfaced online over Memorial day weekend. In the Facebook post, along with the photo, was another picture revealing Bossle’s former address in Salisbury.
“My address has been linked with this photo. The photo is 10 years old, maybe a little less, but it’s an old photo that’s been circulating around,” said Asay.
And Asay says it didn’t take long for the harassment to start.
“I received a letter in the mail for the person in the photo and I could see through the letter, I didn’t open the letter,” said Asay.
Someone even went as far as to make a fake 911 call to the Wicomico County Sheriff’s Office, claiming that someone inside the home had just shot a family member and planned on shooting more people.
“As you might imagine, that initiated quite a response to the residence,” said Lieutenant Tim Robinson.
But inside the home, was Asay’s brother, who was staying with her at the time to make her feel safe after learning her address was being shared with thousands of people.
“The whole house was surrounded and it was a very scary situation for him, and it was very scary for me before I knew what was going on,” said Asay.
Thankfully it didn’t take long for officers to put two and two together.
“Shortly after we got there we did get the individual out, we did realize that something wasn’t adding up,” said Lieutenant Robinson.
And now Asay is doing everything she can to let people know she has no connection to the photo whatsoever.
“I just want to put it out there that the address is wrong. He does not live here. I’ve lived here for a long time. And I’m a good person, and I love America and I’d never burn a flag,” said Asay.
The sheriff’s office is still looking to find the person who made the fake 911 call. But they have no leads as of yet. Lieutenant Robinson adds that he also wants to remind people that just because you see something on Facebook or any other social media doesn’t always mean it’s 100% accurate.