Fact Check: 'Sahil Omar' Is NOT Suspect In Fort Worth Hotel Explosion

Fact Check

  • by: Marlo Lee
Fact Check: 'Sahil Omar' Is NOT Suspect In Fort Worth Hotel Explosion Not Confirmed

Was "44-year-old Sahil Omar" confirmed as a suspect in the explosion at the Sandman Signature Fort Worth Downtown Hotel in Texas? No, that's not true: The Fort Worth police department had not named any suspects at the time of writing. "Sahil Omar" has been labeled a suspect in multiple tragedies in states far from one another on the social media website X, likely as an internet in-joke.

The claim appeared on X, formerly Twitter, on January 8, 2024 (archived here). The tweet read:

🚨BREAKING: The suspect of the #explosion at the Sandman Signature Fort Worth Hotel in Texas, USA, has been identified as 44 year-old migrant Sahil Omar. Authorities have yet to find a motive. A many as 11 people injured.

This is what the post looked like on X at the time of writing:

image (63).png

Twitter screenshot(Source: X screenshot taken on Tue Jan 9 15:18:37 2024 UTC)

The X post included two videos showing the aftermath of the alleged explosion -- but it had no evidence substantiating the claim of a suspect by that name.

An explosion occurred January 8, 2024, at the Sandman Signature hotel in Fort Worth, with multiple news organizations including The Associated Press (archived here) reporting without naming any suspects.

Lead Stories contacted the Fort Worth Police Department about this claim. In a January 9, 2024, email, Fort Worth police spokesperson Gëzim Pollozani told us:

We have not [been] made aware of any potential suspect(s) involved in yesterday's explosion. This is the first we are hearing about this claim. ...

The Fort Worth Police Department posted an update on the explosion on X at 10:12 p.m. on January 8, 2024, without naming suspects. The last line of the post read, "This is an ongoing investigation and further details will be released as they become available" (archived here). Below is the post:

At the time of writing, the police department's X account had posted no further details concerning the investigation.

Previously, X users claimed "Sahil Omar" was a name on Jeffrey Epstein's client list (archived here) -- a tweet added his name to the list with "Missed one. Sahil Omar"; that he was the suspect in the University of Nevada, Las Vegas shooting (archived here), which happened in December 2023 (archived here), and that he was a suspect behind the Rainbow Bridge explosion (archived here), which occurred in November 2023 (archived here). There is no evidence (archived here) according to a Google News search of thousands of credible news sites that the name Sahil Omar was on Epstein's client list. The suspect for the UNLV shooting was identified as Anthony Polito, and investigators found that the Rainbow Bridge explosion was caused by a car crash, and was not considered an act of terrorism (archived here).

Lead Stories found that the name "Sahil Omar" was being used on social media similar to the way "Sam Hyde" shows up as a person involved in various ongoing news stories. The Daily Dot summarized the lore behind Sam Hyde here (archived here).

Lead Stories debunked "Sam Hyde"-related claims here.

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Marlo Lee is a fact checker at Lead Stories. She is a graduate of Howard University with a B.S. in Biology. Her interest in fact checking started in college, when she realized how important it became in American politics. She lives in Maryland.

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