Police Seize Computer Of Wikipedia Hoaxer

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A Wikipedia posting about the death of pro wrestler Chris Benoit’s wife that preceded the discovery of the Benoit family’s bodies has become a major obstacle in the murder-suicide criminal investigation, authorities told ABC News. “It is unbelievable what a hindrance this has put on our investigation,” said Lt. Tommy Pope, a spokesman for the Fayette County, Ga., Sheriff’s Department. “We’ve got to put a lot of effort and time into working to prove or disprove that someone put up a hoax situation or that somebody was conceiving the death from out of state,” Pope said, adding that investigators have been flooded with tips regarding a Web posting that’s very likely a bizarre coincidence.

Police have traced the Wikipedia posting and subsequent anonymous confession and apology to an IP address in Connecticut. Pope said local authorities there are working with his department and have seized computer equipment from the person responsible for the postings. “We know who the person is,” Pope said, adding that police wouldn’t reveal his or her identity until early next week. By then they hope to have determined whether the person was implicated in what police earlier this week called a double murder-homicide. If the person had knowledge of the death before police discovered the body, he or she could face criminal charges.