Have you heard of the incident where the guy that died at his doorstep from the police and he wasn’t even armed? Did you know he was an innocent, unarmed father? He died from a hoax emergency call that has become a new trend known as swatting. Pranksters wanted payback on the other guy that was beating him on the game ‘Call of Duty.’ That guy was Andrew Finch he wasn’t even involved with video games; he was just a father of two young kids. Swatting is a hoax phone call to emergency services with an extreme, violent fake story to send police forces to raid the victims house. There are a tremendous amount of swatting incident, that same of the victim that have been swatted don’t want to come out on camera to avoid being a target again. There have been also swatters that have been caught and most of them are paying the price. Sending out the swat team cost around $10,000 for the equipment trucks itself. Do to the fact that most of the swatters are out of state and are international swatting isn’t a big deal for them. For example, ‘obnoxious’ was a swatter that targeted female twitch streamers but was from Canada and a minor. Most of the bills that have passed have been only when the swatting has already occurred. In order to combat swatting the government should pass laws that would try swatters.
The most targeted people that swatters go after, celebrity’s, streamers, female teens and gamers. U.S. Rep. Katherina Clark saw swatting being an issue after the fact that Matthew Weignman and similar hackers would us the swat team as their toys. U.S. Rep Ted Lieu would also see swatting as a problem do to the fact of celebrity’s were having their houses raid from swat team because of Mir Islam targeting them. Those two states have passed a bill against swatting but the other states are not informed on the issue and until something drastically happens they’ll do something about it. Eric Brumfield has mentioned in his article that “there have been more than 400 swatting call nationwide.” (Brumfield) I agree that there’s been more than 400 swatting calls including the recent one that happen on July 15 in California. FouseyTube is a Arab YouTuber that has created prank back in 2015 then moved onto vlogs. Recently he decided to renovate the Hollywood Bowl but was shut down over a hoax call saying there’s a bomb treat. It’s still a problem that people that go online know about it. The most serious case was on a swatter name obnoxious a 15-year-old that was lived in Canada. FBI Finley would discover ‘obnoxious’ location but wasn’t able to fly to his location to arrest him including the fact that his a minor and Canada has different laws there then here. Obnoxious was arrested multiple time only to be released on bail as Canada didn’t see swatting as a crime. The fact that other countries have not really in countered with swatting as much as the U.S has it doesn’t matter to them. That’s why I would propose a law that would let swatters to be sent to the U.S to be tried in court for the crimes that they caused making hoax emergency calls. A swatter perspective they see swatting as a joke that get a laugh about the situation leaving a mark like “don’t fuck with me because I know where you live”. Its intimidating that the swatter gets to play with law enforcement that an actual problem can be going on. The government should see this as a problem as it happened more than 400 times and just to deploy the swat cost $10,000. According to Danny Gold a journalist from Vice News that interviewed Sgt. Edward Ciempola.
U.S. Rep Katerina Clark proposed the ‘Interstate Swatting Hoax Act’ against swatting being the consequences very severe. Stating in Sec.2 1041, 1-4 that the suspect can be fined or imprisoned no more than 5 years or less, if the victim results bodily injured the suspect would serve 20 years or less, if a result in death the suspect can result to life in prison. But who really cares? Who besides me and a handful of swat members have a stake in these claims? At very least, the agents who formally believed that swatters should be extradition to the state that are causing problems too. Minor in particular should be trialed as adults as they to cost the state, the police forces thousands.
Using the ‘Interstate Swatting Hoax Act’ has given me a better understanding of the bill that was passed in Massachusetts. U.S Rep Katherina Clark was really ferrous when being swatted that really punishes these swatters.
Rep. Clark, Katherina, “Interstate Swatting Hoax Act” ‘congress gov’ (11/18/2015)
Vice News goes over swatting very will interviewing Sgt. Edward Ciempola of how swat take their job very seriously as no one knows is it’s a real problem or a hoax. They also have evidence of how a swatter would call the police and how violent they sounded.
Gold, Danny “Police Militarization meets Hacker Culture: Swatting” Vice News (Jun 5, 2014)
Brumfield give main point of how to stop swatting of much the cost is and the statistics of how many times it has occurred. Actually using legal background of whats a already a crime that can relate to swatting and on why it would be taken seriously.
Brumfield, Eric, “Chapter 284: Deterring and Paying for Prank 911 Calls That Generate a Swat Team Response.” 45 McGeorge L. Rev. 585 (2014).
‘Swatting’ and Punishment is a informative new article that summarizes Kansas incident. Using Katherine Clark bill of how she dealing with swatting in Massachusetts with extreme consequences. The author also explains how the police officer was in the wrong for jumping on the trigger to fast. But yet again the call that was made was really bad that the officers were dealing with a big threat.
“Swatting’ and Punishment.” Los Angeles Times, 04 Jan, 2018, pp.A.8 SIRS Issues Rearchers, https://sks.sirs.com