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Expert says alleged recording of racist, antisemitic rant by Pikesville High principal could be fake

BCPD investigates after fallout over principal recording
BCPD investigates after fallout over principal recording 02:27

BALTIMORE -- As the investigation into a disturbing audio recording that surfaced earlier this week continues, WJZ is asking an expert about the authenticity of it.

Is it real or is it fake?

That's the question many in the community have been asking about an audio recording going around social media containing racist and antisemitic comments allegedly made by Pikesville High School Principal Eric Eiswert.

WJZ is choosing not to air the recording at this time because we cannot verify the authenticity of it, but we had an expert listen to it to try to learn more.

Hany Farid is a professor at the University of California, Berkley specializing in digital forensics and authenticating digital media.

"I don't think you can say that this is an authentic recording," Farid said. "And, that's not to say that it's fake. Notice that I was very careful with my wording here. I don't think you can say it's real and I think before we say it's real – and it would have serious consequences if it's real, of course -- we need more information."

He tells us without proper context and information about where the recording came from, it's hard to tell whether it's legit.

But, he says there are some red flags, including the fact that there are edits in the audio.

"The one thing that is completely unambiguous is that it has been spliced together," Farid said. "There are six moments in time, in fact, if you listen to it, you can hear the splices. They're actually quite apparent."

A spokesperson for Baltimore County Schools says the recording is under investigation.

WJZ stopped by Eiswert's home Wednesday morning to see if he had a comment about the recording.

A person spoke to us through the front door, first telling us Eiswert was not home. Then the person told us, "He wants to know what side you're on, I guess."

The person then says, "Nobody is going to believe his story anyway, so it doesn't really matter."

WJZ also reached out to the union that represents Baltimore County School administrators, called Council of Administrative and Supervisory Employees.

In a statement the director, Billy Burke, told WJZ…

"The outrageous language in the audio is not the language, thoughts or character of Principal Eiswert. He is an outstanding school leader who has daily demonstrated his commitment to the students, community and faculty of Pikesville HS. We support the BCPS investigation and will provide our full cooperation. We ask that there be a pause in any rush to judgment, and that we act respectfully to his family, staff, and to each other. Let this be a reminder that hate has no place."

WJZ asked Baltimore County Schools if Eiswert is on leave pending the investigating. We were told they couldn't comment on that because it is a personnel matter.

Related: Pikesville High investigating principal after racist, antisemitic rant surfaces, but recording may be fake

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