Fake News: Stormy Daniels NOT Dead, Did NOT Commit Suicide

Fact Check

  • by: Maarten Schenk
Fake News: Stormy Daniels NOT Dead, Did NOT Commit Suicide

Did Stormy Daniels commit suicide? Nope, the porn star accusing President Trump of having an affair with her several years ago is not dead and so her death was definitely not ruled a suicide. That story appeared on a satire website seeking to mislead conservative and Republican people into sharing fake stories so they could be mocked for it online.

The story originated from an article published on March 29, 2018 on Daily World Update titled "UPDATE: Stormy Daniels' Death Ruled A Suicide" (archived here) which opened:

The Chief Medical Examiner at Bethesda Naval Hospital has determined that Penelope Withers, AKA Stormy Daniels, died of an intentional overdose. He has listed her cause of death as "suicide." Daniels' lawyer, Michael Alvaretto, says he will continue the lawsuit for her daughter:

"My client was bullied into taking her own life. We'll be seeking $159 million in damages."

First of all, Stormy Daniels' real name is not Penelope Withers, it is "Stephanie Gregory Clifford" and her lawyer is "Michael Avenatti", not "Michael Alvaretto". And there have been no reports from any reliable news sources about any suicide involving Stormy Daniels.

We wrote about dailyworldupdate.com and their hoaxes before, here are our most recent articles that mention the site:

The site comes with a clear satire disclaimer at the bottom of each article:

sat·ire ~ˈsaˌtī(ə)r
the use of humor, irony, exaggeration, OR ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.
If you disagree with the definition of satire or have decided it is synonymous with "comedy," you should really just move along.

The owner and main writer of the site is self-professed liberal troll Christopher Blair, a man from Maine who has made it his full time job to troll gullible conservatives and Trump supporters into liking and sharing his articles. He runs several other websites such as ladiesofliberty.net, shareotonin.com and dailyworldupdate.com. Sometimes he is also known under his nickname "Busta Troll". He has at least one accomplice who writes under the pen names "Freedom", "Captain Jellypants", "Butch Mannington" or "Captain Buck Atlantis".

Articles from Blair's sites frequently get copied by "real" fake news sites who often omit the satire disclaimer and any other hints the stories are fake. Blair has tried to get these sites shut down in the past but new ones keep cropping up and he keeps knocking them down.

If you see one of his stories on a site that does not contain a satire disclaimer, assume it is fake news. If you do see the satire disclaimer it is of course also fake news.

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  Maarten Schenk

Maarten Schenk is the co-founder and COO/CTO of Lead Stories and an expert on fake news and hoax websites. He likes to go beyond just debunking trending fake news stories and is endlessly fascinated by the dazzling variety of psychological and technical tricks used by the people and networks who intentionally spread made-up things on the internet.

Read more about or contact Maarten Schenk

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