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Fact Check-Photo does not show U.S. navy officer involved in Texas Navy Base shooting

Updating to include comment from the Navy in paragraph 4

A U.S. navy officer pictured with her dog is not the person who saved a Texas Navy base from a militant attack in May 2020, as over 345,000 social media users are suggesting. Yaisa Coburn is the woman who was instrumental in saving the base, while the woman in the photo’s surname is Boyd and photos show she does not bear a resemblance to Coburn.

The posts (here , one of which (here) is from May 2020 but is being shared in April 2021 (here , here) have the following caption accompanying the photo, “This last Thursday morning, May 21, a Syrian-American terrorist armed with an AR-15, a shotgun, and a pistol planned to shoot the gate guard, enter the Navy base in Corpus Christi, Texas and kill as many on base as possible. A young female Sailor on duty checking IDs was shot square in the chest by the terrorist. Her ceramic armor stopped the bullet, but the force knocked her to the ground. She was able to activate the final denial barrier before the terrorist could pass through. She then unloaded her side arm pistol into the vehicle killing the terrorist and saving unknown lives.”

This description is referring to a shooting at Naval Air Station Corpus Christi in Texas on May 21, 2020 by a Syrian-born U.S. citizen (here , here).

Francoise Kieschnick, Public Affairs Office for Naval Air Station Corpus Christi (NASCC), told Reuters via email, “That photo is not the Sailor who was involved. That Sailor – looks like nameplate says “Boyd” -- is not assigned at NASCC either.”

The U.S. Navy website description of the incident here is very similar to that of the social media posts. It identifies the woman as Master-at-Arms Second Class Petty Officer Yaisa Coburn and describes how she was shot in her protective vest by an armed suspect but immediately activated the “final denial barrier, radioed dispatch and returned fire”, before “neutralizing” the gunman with the help of another officer, not alone, as the social media posts suggest.

Coburn is pictured on the U.S. navy website here . Another photo of Coburn can be seen here on the Naval Station Corpus Christi Facebook page, where her name is visible on her certificate. Coburn does not seem to bear a resemblance to the woman pictured in the social media posts.

The name “Boyd” is written on the right-hand chest of the woman pictured in the social media post. The name on the front of this U.S. Navy uniform is likely the person’s surname: see this Reuters photo here where the word “Bautista” is on U.S. Navy Counselor Luz Bautista’s uniform in the same place and other examples of navy uniform here and here .

Tarheel Canine Training’s website says here that the photo shows U.S. Navy dog handler Amanda Boyd with her dog Omar, who received a custom painted muzzle sponsored by one of their Pet Obedience Trainers.

VERDICT

Miscaptioned. While the post provides a largely accurate description of the incident at the Texas Navy Base, the woman described is Yaisa Coburn, who is not the woman pictured.

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

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