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SWAT team invades Texas family's front yard over Black Ops

2/15/12 5:00pm

Update: According to the official press release this type of incident has a moniker in some online communities of "Swatting". "Swatting occurs when a hacker obtains personal information on unsuspecting parties and places a bogus emergency call (via internet service or spoofed number) to solicit police or SWAT response".

A North Texas family was put in a rather uncomfortable situation as SWAT surrounded their house this past Monday, all because of a video game. This all happened like 15 minutes from the HQ by the way...

It appears that their son was playing a game of Call of Duty: Black Ops on the Xbox 360 and one user took the game too far. While in between multiplayer sessions, one user came onto the chat “out of nowhere and basically said he’s going to hack me, he’s going to get my information, call the SWAT team over to my front yard”. This sort of trash talk is all too common for online multiplayer, so the teen ignored the comment, but this wasn’t the usual trash talk. 20 minutes after the conversation, Lewisville received a call from an operator via the AT&T Instant Message Relay Service (a system designed to accommodate the hearing impaired). They received a message that a person at the teenager’s house was shot and someone was inside still shooting.

There were no signs of a shooting from the first response officers, but they would eventually surround the house. Captain Kevin Deaver began to call the family out, but as the mother went to open the door, his father pulled her back inside and hid the family in the bedroom. It was only after the mother herself called 911 and was connected with the police outside, that the family came out and revealed that there was nothing wrong. Police are now investigating the source of the message under the charges of it being a false report and are working on a subpoena to obtain more information.

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