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Fact Check-McDonald’s in Elkton, Maryland is not under investigation for sex trafficking 

A post on a Facebook page claiming that there is a sex trafficking investigation into a McDonald’s location in Elkton, Maryland is false. The official page for the town of Elkton and the Elkton Police Department both confirmed on Facebook that the account impersonating the city is spreading false information.

An example can be seen here .

The post reads: “Big news for Cecil county today, Elkton McDonald’s on Pulaski highway located in the big elk shopping center is being permanently shut down as of 4/27/21 due to a S*x trafficking investigation and international money laundering investigation. - Town of Elkton public official.”

A post on an official Facebook page for the town here warned about the fabricated account. The post reads: “There is a Fake story on a fake Town of Elkton MD page- this page is not sponsored or run by the municipality. Just beware of what information is on social media.”

Elkton Police Department posted on its Facebook page here confirming that the page is fabricated and that the McDonald’s location is not closed.

The post reads: “It has been brought to our attention of a fictitious Town of Elkton MD Facebook page circulating a story regarding the closure of the McDonalds Restaurant located at Routes 213/40. There is only one official Town of Elkton FB page (depicted below), which is moderated by the Towns administration team. This account represents our community and its leadership. We thank everyone for their calls and concerns regarding this account and have made the appropriate notifications to FB.”

While the restaurant did not answer calls by Reuters, it is open according to Google here!1m4!1u3!2m2!3m1!1e1!2m1!1e3!3sIAE,lf:1,lf_ui:4 .

McDonald’s did not immediately respond to Reuters request for comment.

The only case of sex trafficking in Elkton Reuters was able to find news of in 2021 was a 41-year-old man who pleaded guilty to the federal charge of sex trafficking a minor on Feb 25, 2021 after operating an illicit prostitution business for the past decade, according to the Department of Justice here .

VERDICT

False. A McDonald’s restaurant in Elkton, Maryland is not closed due to a sex trafficking investigation. The claim originated from a Facebook page impersonating the town.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work  here  .         

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