Erroneous reports about Tom Petty's death cause confusion


For several hours Monday, music lovers believed Tom Petty was dead.

Courtney Love, Talib Kweli, Kid Rock, Cyndi Lauper, Paul Stanley and Lin-Manuel Miranda were among scores of fans posting remembrances on Twitter, where Petty was the top worldwide trending topic Monday afternoon. A memorial was scheduled for his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

But the 66-year-old entertainer is still alive, and news outlets that announced his death Monday retracted their stories later Monday. The Walk of Fame tribute was canceled.

The confusion started with CBS News and the Los Angeles Police Department. CBS published Petty’s obituary after tweeting that the LAPD had confirmed his death. The trade paper Variety followed, citing an unnamed source confirming the rocker’s death.

Then the LAPD issued a statement saying it has no information on Petty’s condition and that “initial information was inadvertently provided to some media sources.”

“We apologize for any inconvenience in this reporting,” the department said.

CBS and Variety amended their stories. CBS News also released a statement maintaining that it “reported information obtained officially from the LAPD about Tom Petty.”

“The LAPD later said it was not in a position to confirm information about the singer,” the statement…



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