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A photo shows Kyle Rittenhouse wearing a “Klan outfit.”

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pants-fire

No, this isn’t a photo of Kyle Rittenhouse in a KKK hood

If Your Time is short

  • This is a photo of a girl taken in rural Arkansas in 2007, and has been used before to falsely claim it showed Sarah Huckabee Sanders. Rittenhouse grew up in the Chicago suburbs. 

An image of a child wearing a white Ku Klux Klan hood has been online for more than a decade, and for more than a year, some social media users have said that it’s Kyle Rittenhouse. 

“Kyle been wanting to murder you since he wore his first Klan outfit,” says a description of the image that was shared on Facebook in September 2020, after he shot and killed three men in Kenosha, Wis. 

The post gained traction once his criminal trial got underway (he was acquitted Nov. 19), and it was flagged as part of Facebook’s efforts to combat false news and misinformation on its News Feed. (Read more about our partnership with Facebook.)

A reverse image search of the photo shows that it was published by Mother Jones and NPR, among other news organizations, in 2008. Captions of the image show that it was taken by photographer Anthony Karen and shows a girl. 

It also appears on Karen’s website with this description: “A Ku Klux Klan Labor Day gathering in rural Arkansas on Saturday, Sept. 1, 2007.”

He has a series of photos capturing the Ku Klux Klan from 2005 to the present on his site, and the girl appears in another photo from the same event

The photographer sent Snopes a third photo in 2017 when the fact-checking site looked into claims that the child pictured was former White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders (also not true). 

Rittenhouse grew up in the suburbs of Chicago, about 600 miles from Arkansas. There is nothing that connects him to this photo.

We rate this post Pants on Fire. 

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