Boston Police are denying news reports of a serial tickler terrorizing the Boston College neighborhood.
A Boston College spokesman has said that the Boston Tickler appears to be a hoax, "or a case of reporting error," following a Boston.com report claiming a man has been breaking into homes near the college and tickling people in their sleep.
Boston.com reported Tuesday nightthat there have been at least 10 sightings of the so-called Tickler, but when asked for comment, BC Spokesman Jack Dunn said, "There were no reports of any students tickled in off-campus apartments made to the Boston College Police, BC Student Affairs or the Boston Police."
Boston Police Officer Rachel McGuire also rebuffed reports of a Boston Tickler, saying "We do have a handful of reports of incidents in the area… but there is no tickling."
Boston.com quoted Boston Police Sergeant Michael O’Hara as saying,“This is no myth...It’s happening,” and said that the so-called Ticklerhas been reported over the last two years in an area from Lake Street to South Street in Brighton popular with Boston College students who live off campus.
The report described the tickler as a 5-foot-8-inch black male of unknown age in dark clothing and a hoodie.
The story went viral on social media, and by Wednesday had been picked up by The Huffington Post and The Daily Mail.
McGuire said the reporter, who she believed may have been a student journalist, took the quotes out of context. O'Hara was referring to the home invasions occurring due to unlocked doors, and he was saying 'it's not a myth that people who leave their doors unlocked may have unwanted visitors."
"We have a handful of reports over the past two years of suspects entering unlocked homes and apartments of students in that area, but we can’t confirm that they’re related,. There is nothing about tickling. Nothing about sexual assaults," McGuire said.