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Good Question: What Should You Do If Caught In A Lie?

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(credit: CBS) Kim Johnson
Kim Johnson joined the WCCO-TV team in May 2014. You can find h...
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – There’s a catch to the story about a fan who nearly caught a ball at the Home Run Derby with his bare hand: It never happened.

Jordan Jacobson tweeted a picture of his bruised hand on Monday night. The 19-year-old told reporters the swelling happened when he tried to catch a home run hit into the stands at Target Field.

But on Thursday, Jordan confessed to making up that story, calling it a joke that got away from him. The Star Tribune said his dad told them his son’s hand actually looks like this because of a birth defect.

Jordan apologized to everyone involved in the story saying he was embarrassed and disappointed in himself. His admission left us wondering: What should you do if you get caught in a lie?

From high-profile scandals of Bill Clinton and Lance Armstrong, to every day fibs, most of have told a lie or two.

But for something we all do, some handle it all wrong.

“The best protocol when your caught in a lie is to fess up immediately, to get it over with,” said Liz Miklya, a crisis management specialist for Weber Shandwick.

She said in the case of Jacobson and his hoax home run hand injury, his first mistake was waiting three days to own up.

“Three days in the world of social media is forever,” she said.

Jacobson’s story spread fast.

“His tweet was retweeted halfway around the world. I saw it in Korean, Spanish it was everywhere,” Miklya said. “Then a popular sports blog retweeted it to their several hundred thousand followers, so once something like that happens you can’t take it back.”

Instead of confessing, Jacobson kept what he called a joke alive in interviews with online media when Miklya says he should have used the opportunity to apologize from the heart.

Coming clean before you’re caught in a lie, Miklya says, makes you more likely to be forgiven.

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