Ever since North Carolina resident Edgar Welch walked into the Comet Ping Pong pizzeria on Sunday and opened fire, the so-called “Pizzagate” conspiracy theory has found itself thrust into the limelight. Long a subject of internet rumblings, the fake news-based “theory” purports former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, her husband Bill, and their associates participated in a pedophilia ring housed in the Washington D.C. restaurant’s non-existent basement. Yet despite Welch’s admission to the New York Times that “the intel on this wasn’t 100 percent,” this brainchild of assorted social media accounts, bots, boards and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones remains.
Nor does it show any signs of dissipating. Aside from the involvement of President-elect Donald Trump’s National Security Advisor appointee in the story’s spread, additional restaurants are now receiving threats. As DNAinfo New York reported on Wednesday, Brooklyn eatery Roberta’s has become the latest target of Pizzagate believers and fake news purveyors alike:
A 24-year-old worker who answered the phone at Roberta’s Moore Street restaurant on Dec. 1 at 11:15 a.m. was told, “You are going to bleed and be tortured,” according to police.
Restaurant workers reported a similar call the next day at 5 p.m., during which the caller asked whether or not Roberta’s had any connection to Pizzagate or a website that had published information about it. Regarding said “website,” DNAinfo New York and The Verge tied the origins of the Brooklyn establishment’s supposed involvement in Pizzagate to a YouTube account‘s since-deleted videos identifying Roberta’s as being connected to Comet Ping Pong.