Now more than ever before, swatting hoax calls have become a common occurrence. What is swatting? Swatting refers to individuals making false reports to police in hopes of getting a SWAT team sent to a person's house.
Usually, the caller will report a serious crime taking place at a location, such as a mass shooting, or a hostage situation. The more serious the call seems, the more likely the police are to send in a SWAT team. Swatters tend to use caller ID spoofing and various online tools to hide their locations and even their voices. Although the primary instances of swatting crimes seem to be occurring within the gaming community, swatting prank calls are not limited to only gamers. There are just as many celebrity swatting victims as there are gamer victims.
Many people are arrested for swatting, but just as many individuals are able to get away with their hoax calls through the use of advanced technology. FBI swatting cases are on the rise, with many agents working diligently on finding the perpetrators of the calls. In Canada, people guilty of swatting can be prosecuted if they include death threats or cause public mischief. In the United States, swatters can be prosecuted if the person is attempting to retaliate against a witness or commits device fraud. In California, perpetrators of swatting will pay fines upwards of $10,000. In 2015, an anti-swatting act was introduced to Congress. However, the bill was never enacted. One of the members of Congress who introduced the bill was later swatted. Recently, there have even been instances of people who died from swatting calls, making it an even bigger issue.
The following list includes swatting arrests, swatting deaths, and every swatting story which has been made public.