A call of shots fired that sent scores of heavily armed officers to a Northwestern University graduate dorm Wednesday afternoon was apparently a case of “swatting,” a false emergency designed to draw a large police response.
Last Tuesday, the Internal Revenue Service said people were being being bilked out of money by criminals pretending to be from the tax collection agency. Two days later, I received a phone call that my provider said was probably spam. They left a message saying they were from the IRS and I was in big trouble.
A fatal police shooting in Kansas late last month focused attention again on how so-called swatting — prank 911 calls designed to get SWAT teams to deploy — puts lives at risk and burdens police departments.
Los Angeles police arrested a 25-year-old man in a suspected "swatting" hoax 911 call in Kansas that ended in the fatal police shooting of an unarmed man.