Fake 911 calls trouble police

February 6, 2009 3:30:25 PM PST
A number of fake calls to 911 have baffled police, because they can't figure out who is making them. The calls aren't being placed from a phone. They're not trace-able. It's something called "swatting."

In one, the caller reports seeing somebody at Linden Avenue with something that looks like a gun.

But there was no one with a gun. The emergency call and four others have been fakes, routed through the internet. The female caller is an operator repeating what someone is typing on a computer or mobile phone. One of the calls made January 22nd was a bomb threat to Middletown High School.

Getting police or a SWAT team to respond is called swatting. It's a nationwide problem with prank callers using relays designed for the speech impaired or internet phone service known as Voip to hide their identity. It can be untraceable.

The bogus calls have resulted in one official complaint filed by someone who matched the fictitious description of a man with a gun.


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