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‘Fraud’ pretends to be sign language interpreter and starts doing random things on camera

Daisy Phillipson

Published 
| Last updated 

‘Fraud’ pretends to be sign language interpreter and starts doing random things on camera

Featured Image Credit: Inside Edition

There are some instances in life where you really don't want to hear the phrase 'fake it till you make it'.

Right before you fall asleep on the operating table is a prime example. The same goes for sign language interpreters, who need rigorous training and extensive experience before appearing on the national news.

Nonetheless, every now and then a fake interpreter makes their way on telly and every time it leaves people baffled.

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This is exactly what happened with Derlyn Roberts, whose case was brought to the attention of the TikTok community in recent weeks:

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Roberts hit the headlines back in 2017 as the sign language interpreter for a major police news conference announcing the arrest of a suspected serial killer in Tampa, Florida.

At first glances, it appeared she was translating the words of Tampa Police Department Chief Brian Dugan.

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But it didn't take long for people to realise she appeared to be signing complete and utter gibberish.

Many were left wondering not only how this happened, but why... what would drive someone to want to do this?

Derlyn Roberts managed to make her way into a police news conference. Credit: Inside Edition
Derlyn Roberts managed to make her way into a police news conference. Credit: Inside Edition

Police spokeswoman Janelle McGregor told Inside Edition at the time: "She showed up and presented herself as being here to provide interpreter services.

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"It's part of something we're looking into. We want to know how she found out about it, if someone hired her to come to the conference."

As for what she'd really been saying through sign language, a real interpreter named Windy Rossi translated for the outlet – although ultimately she wasn't making any actual phrases or statements.

Approximately three minutes into the conference, she reportedly signalled: "Kill 55 million [unintelligible] please [unintelligible] arrest killed [unintelligible] work school work four one kill [unintelligible] three old two four now I will have ask want [unintelligible] about two times night."

Rossi added: "The deaf community was being left out of important information in their community."

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Reports suggested that Roberts was questioned by the police for her actions, although there's no news on whether she spent any time behind bars.

Nonetheless, the Daily Mail obtained police records showing she had previous convictions for grand theft and burglary, and had even served a five-year sentence on a felony fraud conviction before being released in 2016.

Whatever the case, TikToker Idkhurr shared a video on the unusual occurrence, writing: "A true fake it till you make it queeeeen."

The TikTok community couldn't help but make jokes about the unusual situation. Credit: Inside Edition
The TikTok community couldn't help but make jokes about the unusual situation. Credit: Inside Edition
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Thousands of people expressed their thoughts on the bizarre case, with one joking: "She needs an Oscar."

"I want to know her motivation," said another, while a third added, "She just stepped in and said watch this mess."

A fourth wrote: "The fact that she dressed up and came to do this is killing me lmao... the dedication."

Others were just shocked by the reporter saying, "It's happened again," including this person who asked: "Again?? This is a common occurrence?"

Maybe not common, but this has certainly happened before, perhaps the most memorable being the guy who signed absolute nonsense during Nelson Mandela's memorial service. Who are these people?

Topics: News, Weird, Viral, Crime, US News

Daisy Phillipson
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