"SWATTING" Prank Terrifies Utah Couple

"SWATTING" Prank Terrifies Utah Couple

Internet prankster sends SWAT team to couple's home by placing a fake distress call. Sandra Yi reports.
(KSL) A Bluffdale, Utah couple had a national "trend" arrive on their doorstep Sunday night, in the form of several police officers.

The homeowner, who asked that he and his wife not be identified, said his wife was streaming video games using a website called Twitch when she saw her personal information pop up in a chat feature. She quickly deleted the comments and logged off, but then a Twitter message was sent to her announcing: "SWAT's coming."

"That was really scary because we had heard of this phenomenon of 'swatting' where people call police under false pretenses, so we were pretty scared," the man said. "We didn't know if this was serious or not."

Saratoga Springs Police Chief Andrew Burton said that his dispatch center received a call around 9:30 p.m. from someone on a online-based telephone service reporting that he had shot and killed his mother and was holding his father and his brother at gunpoint as hostages.

"Of course, the dispatch center has no idea whether the call is legitimate or not, but every call has to be taken as though it's legitimate, so police units were dispatched," Burton said, noting that a call of that kind required extra units.

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