Man Arrested in 'Swatting' Prank That Led to Deadly Police Shooting

Camera IconThe man was reportedly playing Call of Duty before the incident occurred.

Swatting happened when someone makes a call to a police department with a false story of an ongoing crime - often with killing or hostages involved - in an attempt to draw a large number of police officers to a particular address. "That cop murdered my son over a false report".

While this is absolutely an illustration of the worst of the worst in toxic online behavior, Andrew Finch's death isn't simply an issue of SWATting and the callousness of some online gamers.

The Associated Press reported the Federal Bureau of Investigation estimates about 400 cases of "swatting" happen every year. Or they call local non-emergency numbers instead of 911, according to 911.gov.

Online gamers have been previously been accused of wasting police time and endangering the public with prank calls, and authorities are now searching for the caller who was responsible for instigating the deadly callout, Mr Livingston said. He said he was holding his mother and a sibling at gunpoint. Unfortunately, the "information [they] were working off of" may have been based on a prank gone wrong. And it isn't known what cause the officer to shoot him on sight.

A man emerged from the house after police arrived. He was taken to the hospital, where he died. Finch's mother said her son was not a gamer.

"As the incident unfolded, a 28-year-old male opened the front screen door and stood in the doorway or just outside that doorway", he said. Armed officers in 2016 responded to an anonymous call claiming an active shooter was at Clark's home. "We have a lot of information to go through".

Professional Call of Duty players on Twitter have attempted to explain the situation themselves (via CharlieINTEL). The police and FBI were investigating whether the hoax call stemmed from an argument over an online game.

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Ramsey first heard of swatting in 2010 and says a popular form of the hoax is through gaming.

His account has since been suspended. "Two teammates [on the losing team] who go by the handles "Miruhcle" and "Baperizer" got into an argument following a loss", summarized GameInformer, "over public Twitter posts and private direct messages with each other".

Officials do, however, say that there are limits to what can be done to combat swatting.

The person who was supposed to be the target of the prank tweeted: 'Someone tried to swat me and got an innocent man killed'.

It appears that police may have been given a false address by one of the gamers, and Finch lived in the home.

Wichita police investigate a call of a possible hostage situation near the corner of McCormick and Seneca in Wichita, Kan., Thursday night.

Gaming industry news site Dexerto reported the argument was over a US$1 (A$1.30) or $2 (A$2.60) bet.

The officer who fired the shot - a seven-year veteran of the police department - will be placed on administrative paid leave, which is department policy. "It's completely illegal. It wastes resources that could be used by the police department in other ways".

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