Candace Owens took to Twitter to weigh in on the Texas school shooting, spreading transphobia and fake news.
According to CNN, the shooting at Robb Elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, claimed the lives of 21 people, 19 of them children. The shooter was identified as Salvador Ramos, an 18-year-old who CNN reports bought “two assault rifles and scores of ammo” for his birthday.
After the shooting on Tuesday, photos of a young trans woman circulated online, with many users accusing her of being the shooter, Indy 100 reports. Users on Reddit and 4chan started spreading false information, circulating pictures of the woman and saying they were pictures of Ramos.
The young woman took to her own social media to assert that she was not the shooter, who is now deceased.
“It’s not me, I don’t even live in Texas,” she wrote alongside a picture of herself on Reddit.
According to Indy 100, she asked viewers to report posts suggesting that she was Ramos. However, people continued to believe the fake news and spread it online, including Owens.
The 33-year-old conservative talk show host tweeted that Ramos allegedly being transgender correlated with significant mental health issues that ultimately pushed Ramos to enter Robb Elementary with a gun.
“What’s drives an 18 year old to murder innocent children?” she questioned on Twitter. “I don’t know. But judging by the photos of him cross-dressing, we can assume there were plenty of signs that he was mentally disturbed and abused by adults in his life. Societal cowardice ignored those plenty of signs.”
Some viewers were quick to correct her in the replies.
“I generally think that endowing corporations and governments to be the arbiters of truth is fundamentally dangerous,” documentarian Ford Fischer replied. “When you, Candace or anyone else, spread actually dangerous disinformation, you are providing ammunition for advocates of censorship.”
One user shared the trans woman’s debunking posts on Reddit.
Owens wasn’t the only person who used incorrect images after the shooting. Arizona Representative Paul Gosar wrote in a since-deleted tweet that the shooter was “a transsexual leftist illegal alien named Salvatore Ramos.”