What are police doing to prevent swatting? Can be life or death to family members of gamers!

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What are police doing to prevent swatting? Can be life or death to family members of gamers!

Go down to the last reply to this post for the latest incident of Swatting being done to an innocent person. This is another reason that video gaming can be dangerous!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

If you are a gamer or are a parent of a gamer, you will want to read this article.  This is happening today.  Very scary!  This can quickly turn into a life or death situation.

I also added most of the comments that were written about this article.

What are police doing to prevent swatting?

Anonymous harassers are sending real police teams to private homes and potentially endangering lives. What are the authorities doing to stop this from happening?

By Jessica Mendoza

February 10, 2015

Such threats typically come from the online gaming community, where competitors can play and interact anonymously.

Almost 60,000 people were watching Joshua Peters at his home when his mother knocked on the door to tell him that a SWAT team had arrived.

Mr. Peters, a Minnesota gamer who goes by the handle Koopatroopa787, was streaming his session of RuneScape on the live-streaming site Twitch when the police showed up. He “returned 15 minutes later, visibly shaken and on the verge of tears, to confirm to the remaining viewers that he had been ‘Swatted.

No one was hurt during the raid, but at the end of his live stream session, an emotional Peters told his attackers – whose identities and motives are still unidentified – to stay away from his family.

 “I had police point a gun at my little brothers because of you,” he said. “They could have been shot. They could have died. Because you chose to swat my stream.”

“Your gripe is with me,” he added, “but do not involve my family in this. They don’t deserve it.”

Got swatted during my stream. 10 cops pointed guns at my 10 year old brother when he answered the door. I'm shaking with frustration.. — Josh (@Koopatroopa787) February 5, 2015

“Swatting” – calling 911 with details of a serious crime so that an armed police response is sent to a target’s home – has become an increasingly popular harassment tactic. While little research has been done on those who engage in swatting, attackers typically do it to make a public statement, to elevate their standing in a group, or to exact revenge, says John Grohol, an expert on technology and human behavior and founder of the website Psych Central.

“It’s an extreme way to get back at someone,” Dr. Grohol says.

Most swatting victims are people of some stature: Celebrities such as Tom Cruise, Ashton Kutcher, and Justin Bieber have all been targeted, as have journalist Brian Krebs and Denver gamer Jordan Matthewson.

In October, Rob Richards, another gamer, was forced out of his New Jersey home and onto the street with his entire family after police responded to a 911 caller who reported violence at the Richards’ address.

"My mom and dad got into an argument and it got physical," NBC Philadelphia quoted the caller saying. "I took the gun and I shot my dad."

The fake crime led to some very real consequences, not least of which was wasted time and taxpayer dollars for the three hour-long investigation that confirmed the call was a hoax. A month later, New Jersey State Assemblyman Paul Moriarty introduced a bill to increase the penalty for false public alarms to a prison term of three to five years, $150,000 fine, or both.

“We need a more severe law to deal with this kind of sick and disturbing activity,” Mr. Moriarty told NBC Philadelphia.

Jersey isn’t the only place to take the crime seriously. In 2013, a 12-year-old boy was prosecuted in Southern California for calling emergency personnel to Mr. Kutcher’s and Mr. Bieber’s homes in two separate occasions.

More recently, an Illinois man was arrested in Las Vegas for calling in a SWAT team to a suburban Nevada home by reporting a fake murder. Illinois State’s Attorney James Glasgow intends to craft legislation that would make swatting a felony, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

The FBI first warned against swatting in 2008, describing callers who “tell tales of hostages about to be executed or bombs about to go off.” Since then, the Bureau has arrested a number of hackers on swatting charges, including Matthew Weigman, a phone hacker, who is in the middle of serving 11 years in federal prison.

Most swatting cases are now handled by local authorities, and the FBI suggests that potential targets inform local police about any swatting threats they may receive online. According to the Bureau’s blog:

Such threats typically come from the online gaming community, where competitors can play and interact anonymously. With a report on file, if a 9-1-1 incident does occur at your home, the police will be aware that it could be a hoax.

“I would be very clear: These are not pranks, these are crimes,” Grohol says. “They are as serious as you can get.”

Related stories

Online harassment targets strike back against abusers. Will it work?
12-year-old admits ‘swatting’ Kutcher, Bieber. Parents, Google your kid

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/USA-Update/2015/0209/What-are-police-doing-to-prevent-swatting-video

https://celebrity.yahoo.com/news/police-doing-prevent-swatting-203539254.html?soc_src=copy

Comments:

Catherine
People do strange things. I was reported to animal control for having abandoned dogs on my property and an animal control officer came to my door.
I did not own any dogs. I live in the country and did have: horses, donkeys, chickens, rabbits, turkeys, and a feral cat that stayed around the barn.
I gave her the grand tour, allowing her to look in the chicken coop, stable, and every where a dog could be.
I still don't know why that happened. She had no idea either.

Reply:
     Tocsin
     Maybe she had the wrong address?

Comment:
Notwot
In some states filing a false emergency call is a misdemeanor. The only way to change things is to start arresting these punks and put them to work at hard labor. Todays youth has too much time too much time money technology and mobility.... It is only going to get worse especially when our culture fosters this emotional detachment from the rights of others.. To these punks the world is their plaything and we are just props to be used for their entertainment... What kind of future are we creating with unbridled youth? every thing made to improve our lives backfires Like mass transit.. sounds great but eventually ends up like new York subways welfare on wheels with dirtbags doing things to the seats.. well:.(
Cell phones in the hands of youth? more phone bills selfie porn you name it..

Replies (2)

Reply:
     simplydelicious
     Needs to be a felony because it DOES endanger lives by taking cops away for a non crime.

Reply:
     fishcrap
      Needs to be felony attempted murder because their goal is to send a violent police response to the home knowing that it can result in death.

Comment:
Somedude 
Remember the days when everyone wasn't neurotic and paranoid about everything? A patrol car with two officers would be dispatched to the scene first to evaluate the situation. It's incomprehensible that a pseudo special forces unit would be dispatched so often and based on random unverified phone calls probably from a pay phone, or as standard procedure at 4 am to serve warrants on non-violent offenders. We're way past the point of diminishing returns here. The cure is now more dangerous than the disease. Come on people, when flash bangs are being thrown into baby's cribs and burning half their face off isn't that a wake up call? This isn't Afghanistan. It was never meant to be this way. Somewhere it went all wrong.

Replies (2)

Reply:
     PB
     Spot on! We desperately need to demilitarize police. They are not trained to use reason or "protect and serve" anymore. They are trained to prioritize deadly force with military tactics like shoot first and ask questions later "so you can go home safe at night to your families" To them, the public is just another enemy to dispose of any way they can without risking any harm to themselves. We can only hope major changes are coming to the United Police and Surveillance States of America where every citizen is a criminal (committing and average of 3 crimes per day) waiting to be brutally disposed of..

Reply:
     Donald
     Its only by the everyday citizen doing his part. Attending civic meetings, and getting involved in politics that this will change. A whale is eaten one bite at a time....

Comment:
Rob D
It's not always the SWAT team. Here in the town I'm in Wisconsin, if someone makes a domestic violence call on someone, they HAVE to bring someone from wherever the fake incident is downtown to the PD!! The #$%$*oles that make the fake calls do it cause of this pretty stupid law. Happened to someone I knew. Apparently because most domestic violence callers recant when the cops get there, they take one of the two people that are at the home in case it actually happened! Now people are doing it to screw with people, the callers usually do it from a payphone and quick take off after they make it. The cops are catching on a little bit, but, if they think its possible something has happened, someone's still going to jail! They recently caught a lady doing it to an ex-husband because they had a camera at the payphone, and yes the guy went to jail for it, they caught her after he and his girlfriend convinced the judge that they didn't do anything. This BS can happen to anyone.

Replies (2):

Reply:
     Farmer
     False Police reports do have consequences. Some don't have a severe enough penalty though.

Reply:
     EloiseN
     Novictim, someone goes to jail? That's taking a bite out of crime, Wisconsin! Bill the taxpayers for the prison stays (are the prisons privately run, too, by any chance?

Comment:
CitizenUser
"The fake crime led to some very real consequences, not least of which was wasted time and taxpayer dollars for the three hour-long investigation that confirmed the call was a hoax. A month later, New Jersey State Assemblyman Paul Moriarty introduced a introduced a bill to increase the penalty for false public alarms to a prison term of three to five years, $150,000 fine, or both."---you need to go after those that make the false crime calls as well as restrain the police. You can't have police going in on an anonymous tip or just one call guns drawn with a SWAT team! That is freaking crazy!

Comment:
Mike
Had idiot next door to me call police & claim that we were fighting , physically abusing our kids - cops showed up , it was dark so they crept into the yard & watched & listened , after mosquitos came after them they shined a flashlights into my windows & said police , they asked about our kids so we told them ' in bed ' . They did not even want to come in , it was obvious call was bogus . My wife went to PD to file harassment report for bogus report - they said they cant do anything . Next call idiot made was to child protective services accusing me of being a drug dealer - all because I got one of his butt buddies in trouble ( this idiot was shooting a pellet gun at kids in the street ) CPS did not even show up just called & were told the story with police !

Replies (2):

Reply:
     Tom G
     Your police dept. is worthless

Reply:
     Mike
     Its not cops its the way the laws are - if a call like that comes in its called good faith/good Samaritan law or other bs !

Comment:
Bandit
Laws need to be enacted to bring extremely harsh punishments to the instigators of Swatting. They should be forced if found guilty to pay back the entire cost of mobilizing a SWAT unit plus damages paid to the victims and a lengthy prison sentence. The people who commit these kinds of attacks need to have their lives ruined as to prevent others from being stupid enough to try. The kind of cowards who use swatting won't last very long in prison anyway.

Replies (2):

Reply:
     I'm Skeptical
     Pass laws to deter people who will never be caught? Yeah, that always works so well... (smh)

Reply:
     donald
     With all of the NSAs technology, how can anyone NOT get caught?

Comment: 
Greg
Three years ago I got an authoritative knock on my apartment door. "open the door". Middle of the afternoon, my building is 100 feet from the county line. All four LEOs were from _that_ county, guns out of their holsters and all in vests. (Which is pretty normal, the vests.)

I was surprised to say the least. Opened the door and never thought to ask for a warrant or explanation. They were looking for a missing female. Who, I didn't have any idea. I complied. They did a quick once-over of my place and left. A few minutes later I realized I was #$%$ off. I slowly realized that for me to get to the bottom of things would involve a #$%$-ton of time and inconvenience.

On the other end of the spectrum, with reference to revenge, a story of a buddy. New to computers, 10 years ago, he played some online games. Some simple stuff, what was available to a typical comp owner back then. He beat someone who responded with a virus that trashed his machine.

As far as my 'search', I wrote it off as a prior resident popping up on someone's/ cops radar.

Comment:
The Greys Are Here
So they aren't doing anything to Prevent Swatting.

Comment:
David
People who pull this kind of prank should get publicly swatted. Maybe we can borrow some of those canes from Indonesia.

Comment:
TIM
how can an anonymous call generate a swat team response? and what happens if me and my family are all peacefully sleeping in the middle of the night and are swatted? if we defend our home with deadly force against armed intruders dressed in black and wearing masks and kill some of them, are we criminals if we manage to survive the encounter? lots of questions here people.

Replies (1):

Reply:
     Ramar Of The Jungle
     I believe you may have a mountain of bills to pay to get out of that one.
I doubt you will kill any because they have their Kevlar on and you are half asleep shaking with your gun. Why because they usually surprise you.

Comment:
Tocsin
I don't understand how these people can send police to someone's home if their gaming identities are anonymous. How do they know the address and why can't the call to 9-1-1 be traced? I guess I'm kinda old.

Replies (2):

Reply:
     I'm Skeptical
     It might take a little work to get the address, unless the gamer victim gives it out in the chatroom. There is no way to trace a disposable cell phone from one call.

Reply:
     DaveB
     Voice over internet protocal. You pick the number that gets displayed on caller ID. Shows up as a internet call at 911, so the "SWATter" just tells the dispatcher the address to send the police to.

Comment:
doG zzz
My ex live in girlfriend did that to me a couple of times...
The old call "911 and hang up without saying a word" thing.
Cops came, questioned me, questioned her separately and left.

We don't live together anymore :)

Comment:
Jeremy
So they can't just use caller ID like 911 operators and go to where the call is made from and arrest them? Seems like they're acting as if it's impossible to find out who made the false report...

Replies (3):

Reply:
     Kevin
     E11 is still not effect for most areas ( getting better). However there are website that can be used to spoof your caller id. Over the years have had to call 911 a couple of times and the first question is, Where are you calling from?" If they are hiding the #. They can tell them any thing they want. 911 pick up on certain items and imediately dispatch appropriate support.

Reply:
     Flash Cadillac
     In almost all cases, the address of the phone is shown on the screen when you call 911. The operator will ask you the location of the emergency for a variety of good reasons, the biggest one being that the emergency may not be at the address that pops up on the screen.

For example, you call 911 from your cell phone in your car when you witness an accident. A less obvious example is if you are talking to your mom on the phone and she says that she's having a heart attack and drops the phone. You want the paramedics to got to her home, not yours.

Reply:
     Catherine
     Disposable phones may be a problem.

Comment:
Thunderspreck
Swatting should be added to the list of felonies for which, if an accidental death occurs, it is considered First Degree Murder. (For most felonies, if an accidental death occurs, it is considered Second Degree Murder, but for specified felonies such as robbery, carjacking, rape, kidnapping, etc. it is First Degree Murder.) I would like to see that applied even in cases where the killing arises from the victim resisting arrest or resorting to force against the police. It should also be a Strike in states with a Three Strikes law.

Replies (3):

Reply: 
     I'm Skeptical
     That's nice. And how exactly do you arrest someone using a $20 throwaway cell phone? Or a stolen one?

Reply:
     IRENE
     Hope you don't ever need help from police,taking away authority from the police is an idiotic idea

Reply:
     EloiseN
     You can't resist arrest and it be OK, OK?

Comment:
Linda
This is purely and clearly a FELONY and you should find the perpetrators and make some examples of a few so that this (dangerous) nonsense stops. Whether it is a child or an adult, a first offender, or a person with a prior record - they need t be held accountable and severely punished for wasting valuable resources and time and putting lives in jeopardy.

Comment:
ChrisV
How about in addition to the heavier punishment for the crank callers we also discuss the militarization of police agencies and the heavy handed tactics that accompany said militarization all under the guise of exigent circumstances..

Comment:
Richard
You don't need new laws. It is simple. The person calling in the false report should be charged according to the actions of the responding officers. If three cops show up with guns drawn, then it is three counts of assault with a deadly weapon. If they break down a door, then it is breaking and entering on top of the assault counts, and so on.

Comment:
Ramar Of The Jungle
This is absolutely not funny.
There are some would be intelligent persons on here who still say very bad things about Germans and they still believe that all Germans were collectively guilty about the atrocities committed and that even today's Germans should be held responsible for plundering the Greeks.
This swatting is a prime example of how anyone in Germany who was a suspect against the Reich was treated. They came in the middle of the night and took one away, the same was done by the STASI after the war in East Germany. We don't don't realize how fortunate we have it here and the cops must be stopped from doing this. There was no complaint department in Germany during and after the war in EG.
So there is no humor for that here, especially after my father in-law was picked up and wasn't seen for 7 years.

Reply:
     Dana
     What you are describing in Germany is exactly what it is turning into here in the USA.

Comment:
john
A lot of restraining order requests are vindictive and driven by vengeance. The judges who sign off on them do no investigation as to their authenticity.

Replies 2:

Reply:
     Dana a
     Judges are handing out restraining orders like pacifiers.
I was hit with a restraining order for someone I had never even met.
Now how do you follow that ? What a position to be put in.
It cost me $2,500.00 in attorney's fees to get it removed.
Now getting it is on my public record with no explanation or mention of the out come.
Like the hundreds of thousands of people arrested every year for things they did not do, now having a public arrest record for anyone to see on line.

Reply:
     Catherinea
     I would love to hear the judge explain how you were supposed to stay away from someone if you had no idea who that person was. He/She could be next to you and you would not know it.

Comment:
ppfftt
The SWAT teams are every bit as guilty as the hoaxer, in the para-military mentality they inflict on anyone they feel like doing it too. That's why they are being used as punishment by hoaxers, they have also been used for punitive payback by the state as well.

Many judges that sign warrants like they mean nothing and take everything the cops says as truth are just as much to blame in the overuse of these units..

DA's fall in right behind quite often backing up cop lies and incompetence.

It is just dangerous to deal with cops any longer many are hell bent to create a problem and attack you just because they can and get away with it,

The feds continue to pay out incentives for actions, and with that the problem will just get worse.

Want to make it a felony to call in a swat hoax, fine. How about a felony for cops every time they hit a wrong address and hurt/kill someone or destroy property unnecessarily, yeah I know will never happen.

Comment:
Budd a
Why should this be any different from yelling fire in a crowded movie theater, if there is no fire?

Reply:
     Robert
     I was thinking the same thing. One operational difference is that swatting can be done anonymously.

Comment:
RACE
funny stuff Maynard - try going to the park for exercise next time. Nobody swats that

Comment:
. . . _ _ _ . . .
Anyone else think the SWAT response is WAY overboard? Unless there are reported shots fired by neighbors or the 911 operator heard them, then SWAT is not needed. But I guess we live in a Police State where the Police can't "Police" anymore. They go balls to the wall with guns blazing.

Comment:
Chryshta
You're all making this about police and not the inconsiderate low-lifes who are playing these pranks? Your priorities need adjusted.

Police do these things because:
1.) Hackers make these calls look legitimate on the surface
2.) Public scrutiny of police ignoring complaints like these required a tightening of most department procedures.
3.) Most swatting instances ARE initially investigated - however not to the length that it sometimes need be before making the call to go to the residence.
---Hackers make calls appear that they are coming from the residence
---Hack users social accounts and post threats confirming the fake story
---Make fake accounts impersonating the hoax victim to appear authentic
---Mimic victim IP addresses
---Typically chose people who've had issues with authorities before

These hackers and hoaxers are extremist losers who cannot handle negative criticisms, differences in opinion, losing in games, or being told to #$%$ off.

Also it's a complete MYTH that this is most prevalent with Gamers. MANY social activists have been swatted - from popular tumblr icons, twitter users, youtubers, etc.

I dare you to post on Tumblr about men being disadvantaged by over-powering women or some #$%$. You'll be doxed in no time. Which is what effectively leads to swatting.

Reply:
     Ramar Of The Jungle
     So what you are saying is such people are miscreants. I just hope they get caught and punished.

Comment:
Ground Control
since when can the police knock down doors on an anonymous tip of wrongdoing? Even a violent crime...the police still have a protocol on getting in a residence..hell what is to keep the police from calling themselves on a targeted individual in order yo skate around a warrant.that is ridiculous he should sue SWAT for civil and constitutional rights violations

Comment:
JB
Getting rid of some of the SWAT teams would help. I can't argue with a swat team for some situations but they're used for overdue parking tickets any more.

Comment:
Gun guy
National Gun Control groups are calling for the reporting of --PERSON WITH A GUN Calls to police with the hope that an honest person who is CCW carry Or open carry will be shot by police !!! This needs to be a criminal offense and enforced to the max.

Comment:
I'm Skeptical
What kind of worship of ignorance does it take for the media to demand that the police stop people from lying during fake 911 calls? Stop how?

The very same fake 911 calls that the media turned into a viral meme?

Comment:
Arizona
Cops love any excuse to do this stuff. Even when it is obvious it is a hoax.

Doesn't take a genius nor multiple hours in time to know it isn't real but those Cops want to go through the "exercise" just the same. For Fun & Profit I guess. Pointing guns at kids too... what "heros".

Reply:
     DsrtWolf
     So, if I'm a cop getting a 911 about a shooting, and I'm dispatched, you want me to just wander up to the door like everything is casual?

Comment:
W
The totalitarian state and its reaction to any hint of violence committed by a competitor simply will not be tolerated!

Comment:
Michael
You want to stop swatting?

GET RID OF THE #$%$%%^ING SWAT TEAMS!

They are unnecessary and a danger to both the SWAT officer and the public!

LEO's childish need to dress up and play "Rambo" with their little toys is not more important than our fundamental human right to not be SHOT in our homes!

Reply:
     Dana
     The number of people and pets murdered by SWAT Teams at the wrong house would supprise most everyone.

Comment:
Clayguy
Shouldn't the person that reported him to get him "swatted" be arrested for filing a false report?

Replies (3):

Reply:
     EricAZ
     I would also add attempted murder since if anything went wrong someone could easily be shot and killed...  

Reply:
     Steven
     Apparently its not all that easy to trace the origin of the call...

Reply: 
     I'm Skeptical
     How do you arrest someone using a $20 throw away cell phone?

Stop letting the media lead you around by the nose like cattle, into blaming the police for this.

Comment:
Diogenes The Dawg
Further evidence that police are mindless morons who love to shoot first and ask questions later. Sending in SWAT without benefit of even the most minimal investigation is despicable yet typical for American police.

Replies (4):

Reply:
     Steven
     Diogenes--is there time for that kind of substantiation...? Especially when the swatter indicates the tragedy has already occurred or is impending within seconds.

Reply:
     Mike
     They send swat cause regular cops can only give u tickets or attack u when there is at least 4 to 1 advantage for them , if u meet them at the door with a gun they will not try to attack u or create an incident !

Reply:
     Ground Control
     hey steven if the situation already occured you are not preventing anything...it already happened

Reply:
    Catherine
     It can be quite dangerous. My school tried to report a drunk who slept in the school gym and refused to leave. 911 thought we had an armed gunman in the school and sent in SWAT.
I saw the SWAT team run past my classroom window and told the class, "If they start shooting, stay on the floor." We had not been told about the drunk and had no idea what was going on.

Comment:
Dennis Rodgers
What happend to the days of calling in 10 large pizzas to a persons place.

Reply
     Gimbal
     And what about ....Is your refrigerator running? or Keep calling same person and ask for John after 3 or 4 times call that person and say "This is John did I have any calls ?"
Those were the good old days before caller ID

Comment:
Daryl
Watched a SWAT assault on the house across the street one evening. The cops piled out of their armored truck yelling and running up the walk. Meanwhile the guy that lived there was standing on the porch with his arms folded watching them charge. They took him out linebacker style and he had to be carried to the police car. Nothing found, no charges.

Comment:

james
the US is degenerating into a cesspool

Comment:
Flash Cadillac z
And the cops fall for it, hook, line, and sinker every time.

Replies (2):

Reply:
     Tocsin
     They have to. They don't know it's not real until they get there and investigate.

Repy:
     Flash Cadillac
     But, they don't need the whole SWAT team and 25 back-up cars, based on one phone call. Send in a couple of cops to investigate and then send out the cavalry if there is a real problem.

The thing is, as other people have pointed out, the police's first response is to send out everything they've got and then call it a practice session if there is no problem. You just can't get enough practice. And if a few citizens have to suffer because of it, too bad for them, police come first.

Comment:
Kilgore Trout
The police state doesn't always do what you want it to.

Comment:
michaelg
NOT the POLICES JOB TO stop SWATTING.......its their JOB to RESPOND to calls needing HELP and if that includes a SWAT TEAM based on the CALL then so be it. GO.

Comment:
Eldo Rado
Lose your home, your car and all your cash plus 11 years in prison sounds about right for this. How many people have been shot by over zealous cops in cases like this??? That would put life without parole on the table in my book.

 

 

Liz Woolley

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Another case-Swatting done to families of gamers by other gamers

Teen pleads guilty to 23 charges of swatting, harassing online game rivals

by  Sam Machkovech -  May 21, 2015 6:37pm CDT

On Wednesday, a Canadian 17-year-old pleaded guilty to 23 charges relating to swatting calls and other false police reports, many of which had targeted his online opponents in the video game League of Legends.

According to a lengthy report by Canadian publication Tri-City News, the prosecution's case against the Coquitlam, British Columbia teenager asserted that the teen (whose name wasn't released due to his age) targeted "mostly young, female gamers" who declined or ignored his friend requests on LoL and Twitter.

The most notable example was an University of Arizona in Tucson college student who'd dropped out after she and her family members had been victimized by repeated swatting calls (including this nearly simultaneous attack on both the woman and her parents), financial information theft, "text bombs," false cell phone service orders, and intrusions into her e-mail and Twitter accounts. According to prosecutors, the months of attacks against this woman began on September 16 when the teen called Tucson police as if he were at her address, "claiming he had shot his parents with an AR15 rifle, had bombs, and would kill the police if he saw any marked vehicles," the report stated.

The report also mentioned an incident on December 1 in which the teenager posted an eight-hour video stream of himself making fake bomb and ransom threats to various police stations. Ars was able to locate an archive of this video which included the same Grove City, Ohio police call described in the Tri-City News report (the specific, offending snippet can be found here). In that call, which he made using Google Voice, he described a hostage situation in which he had bound and gagged a family, was (again) wielding an AR15, had planted "six bombs" around their home, and demanded a $20,000 ransom.

New meaning of the word “obnoxious”

The user, who identified himself in the video as a member of Lizard Squad and went by the handles "obnoxious" and "internetjesusob," was arrested eight days later in his hometown of Coquitlam. That arrest, according to a Polk County Sheriff's Office press release, came after local authorities were tipped off about two fake bomb threats he'd called into an Orlando-area high school in September and October—which he'd called in after telling his "juvenile" victim, "I am going to swat your school."

The case against this swatting teen was stacked with even more stories of false reports, including him admitting to having called in a 2013 bomb threat to Disneyland that targeted its Space Mountain ride. The attacks described in the Tri-City News report targeted victims who resided almost exclusively in the United States, including other swatting and financial fraud incidents in Minnesota, California, and Utah.

The report described the teen's apparently remorseless appearance at the Wednesday hearing: "Wearing a sweatsuit, no shoes and shackles on his ankles, the teen smirked but showed little emotion during the proceeding, though often flipped his hair, drummed his fingers on his knees or pumped his leg quickly." He will return to the same Coquitlam court on June 29 for sentencing.

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2015/05/teen-pleads-guilty-to-23-charges-of-swatting-harassing-online-game-rivals/

Liz Woolley

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$3M 'Fortnite' champion Kyle Giersdorf falls victim to SWAT team

By: Jason Owens
Yahoo Sports Aug 12, 2019, 9:01 PM

[A heavily armed SWAT team showed up to Kyle Giersdorf's home after a caller claimed he had murdered his father and was holding his mother hostage. (Getty)]

Last month, 16-year-old Kyle Giersdorf won $3 million when he was crowned champion of the Fortnite World Cup in New York.

His newfound fame for video gaming caught up with him on Saturday.

Giersdorf, aka Bugha, was in the middle of livestreaming a game of “Fortnite” on streaming platform Twitch when he told his followers he had been “swatted.”

What is swatting?

“Swatting” is a form of harassment incited by alerting police of a false crime like a murder or hostage situation at the intended target’s home. It has been used occasionally in the online video gaming community.

An actual SWAT team arrived at Giersdorf’s Pennsylvania home with guns drawn after a call was made to local police by somebody claiming to be Giersdorf.

Police told that Giersdorf murdered his father

Cpl. Albert Werner of the Upper Pottsgrove Township Police told ESPN that the person impersonating Giersdorf said that he had killed his father via multiple gunshots and was holding his mother hostage in the garage.

This, of course, was not the case. Giersdorf’s father answered the phone when police called and eventually walked outside as a tactical team surrounded the home. One of the the officers recognized Giersdorf, and the situation was settled in less than 30 minutes, Werner said.

“Well, that's a new one,” Giersdorf said to the 38,000 people watching his stream when he returned around 10 minutes after he left, according to ESPN. “They came in with guns, bro. They literally pulled up. That's scary. The internet's f---ing crazy.”

Giersdorf’s team still wins

According to BBC News, Giersdorf’s team still won the game despite the real-life scare. Giersdorf was playing with two other teammates who locked down the win in the seven-hour game during his absence.

Police told ESPN that they believed the call came from Europe but did not provide any other details on the suspected “swatter.”

Deadly gamer “swatting”

Video game-related “swatting” has had deadly consequences in the past. Tyler R. Barriss, a 26-year-old from Los Angeles, is serving a 20-year prison sentence after calling in a false report of a hostage situation that drew police to the Wichita, Kansas home of 28-year-old Andrew Finch.

The call was made as part of a dispute over an online game of first-person shooter “Call of Duty.” An officer shot and killed Finch — who was not involved in the dispute — when he opened the door to his home.

Finch had recently moved into the home that was previously occupied by the intended victim of the “swatting.”

https://sports.yahoo.com/3-m-fortnite-champion-kyle-giersdorf-fell-victim-to-swat-team-hoax-midgame-020135326.html

 

Liz Woolley

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