On Saturday, according to The Daily Beast, police announced the arrest of Katie Sorenson, a social media influencer on motherhood topics in Northern California, for lying that a Latino couple had tried to abduct her children at a Michael’s craft store in Petaluma.
Sorenson, who ran the now-defunct Instagram page @MotherhoodEssentials, first made the claim in a viral video last December that was swiftly debunked by authorities. She is facing two misdemeanor counts.
“‘Great news for us all but mostly for my cousin, Sadie Vega-Martinez and her husband Eddie,’ a family member wrote on Facebook after the charges were announced,” reported Justin Rohrlich. “‘They were falsely accused by this ‘influencer’ of trying to kidnap her kids at a local Michaels store. A major allegation! She obviously didn’t know who she was messing with… my cousin. Prima, I’m so glad you persisted! There absolutely need to be consequences for attention seeking ‘influencers’ that make up drama for likes and views on social… Can you imagine this happening to YOU? It totally could. And it’s unreal.'”
“I was totally paralyzed with fear,” Sorenson said in the original video. “I saw these people, they didn’t look necessarily clean-cut. I felt uncomfortable around them, and instead of making them uncomfortable with my discomfort, I chose to remain in my discomfort.” Some of her claims in the video, like that they appeared to follow her into the store without buying anything, were disproven by security camera footage.
“A source close to Sorensen told The Daily Beast that the Petaluma Police Department sent the case to the District Attorney’s office after finishing their investigation,” said the report. “The maximum sentence on each of the two charges is six months in prison, but the source said it is rare that a defendant be given that much time in such a case unless there are ‘very specific circumstances’ involved.”