It used to only happen over a backyard fence or in the beauty shop but now idle gossip and rumors are spread right out in the open. We don't call it gossiping anymore we call it social media and the yesterday in Iberia Parish the Facebook faithful were fanning the flames of an incident that never happened.

Just to set the record straight, there was not an abduction at the New Iberia Walmart yesterday. New Iberia Police did detain a man regarding an allegation of stalking but after questioning the unidentified man was released. Police say there did not appear to be any abduction or plans for an abduction and therefore there was no reason to further detain the individual.

According to a report on KATC TV 3 rumors of this kind are fairly common on social media and they usually begin with a scenario like this.

A friend of a friend (or relative) was shopping in a store with her children when she noticed someone following them. She calls security in some cases or flees to her car in others. Some go so far as to provide details of known sex-trafficking rings operating in the area.

Here's the bottom line. If you do feel threatened, for whatever reason, call 911. The police will respond quickly and make sure that you are out of harm's way. It's their job and they are quite good at doing it so let the professionals handle the issues.

They also remind you that if there were abduction threats or threats of any kind for your area they would let you know. They don't keep things like that a secret. Their mission is to keep you safe.

Another thing to consider, social media is full of idiots. Some of them can be quite dramatic and convincing in the telling of their stories. We suggest you take what you read with a grain of salt and use your own common sense to avoid putting yourself or your family in a dangerous situation.