Police called to shooting reporting only to discover it was “swatting call”

Maryland

KNOXVILLE, Md. (WDVM) — Police responded to a call in Knoxville on Thursday for a report of a shooting with the suspect threatening suicide, but little did the officers or residents know that this was in fact a “swatting call.”

Swatting calls are false 911 calls reporting a serious incident to garner a large response from police and other agencies. Deputies from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office were called to a media company on the 19500 block of Keep Tryst Road just after 8 p.m. to one such call.

The owner initially did not let officers into the resident with a warrant, but because the report seemed serious, officers continued with the check to confirm the safety of the occupants.

“It puts people in danger going somewhere that they didn’t necessarily go and then you have the other aspect of when you arrive on scene, confusion, stress and danger — puts the occupants of property in with not knowing what that interaction is going to be,” Sgt. Carly Hose with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office said.

Hose also stressed that regardless of the intent of a swatting call, it is a crime and puts both officers and victims of the call at risk.

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