13 year old boy from Southern California confesses to three swatting incidences
A 13-year-old Southern California boy has confessed to indulging in swatting on three different occasions. Once he even threatened to blow up a house filled with hostages in suburban California in a offence which is known as swatting.
Swatting or calling in the SWAT teams for fun has become a increasing phenomenon among gamers and a serious pest for the authorities. Gaining experience from the SWAT teams in their gameplay, gamers often call police to inform them of a fictitious gruesome crime, often involving hostage situation being underway. In all probability such a call triggers the SWAT teams who rush to the address only to find it to be a prank.
“The Camarillo incident there were 20-plus officers there. I was at that call. We basically surrounded the house. The caller reported there were 10 hostages in the house and demanded $30,000 in cash or he would blow up the house,” Det. Gene Martinez of the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department said in a telephone interview with Ars Technica. “Whenever there is a hostage situation, we activate specialized units to respond.”
As the boy is underage he was not named by the authorities. The boy has been released to the custody of his parents pending a juvenile court hearing scheduled next month. He is likely to get a probation term as punishment.
The police traced the 13 year old from the the IP address that the VOIP calls made to the police originated from. Upon raiding the boy’s Camarillo, the police authorities found phone spoofing software on his computer.
The police said that the boy’s swatting calls included two in Ventura County, just north of Los Angeles and targeted his teacher and a classmate. The third call swat call was made to embarrass a rival Minecraft gamer in Ocean City, New Jersey.
“He did admit to doing the incidents,” Martinez said. “He felt he was wronged.”