A father has become a victim of a swatting prank over a game of Call of Duty.
For those who aren’t familiar with the term, swatting is when an individual calls emergency services for serious crimes like hostages or shootings even though these incidents are actually hoaxes. The goal of the prank is to get a large number of armed police forces to arrive at the designated address, mostly to disrupt gamers playing competitive games like Call of Duty and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
Though swatting is considered a controversial prank in the online gaming community, it’s been used by gamers holding grudges against their rivals, and sometimes used on celebrities like Justin Bieber and Ashton Kutcher.
Now it seems like the worst swatting scenario has come true. According to The Wichita Eagle, police shot and killed Andrew Finch in Wichita, Kansas on December 28 after gamers decided to make a fake homicide and possible hostage incident to the police as a swatting prank. The prank call was made after an argument over a $1.50 wage on a match on Call of Duty between players Baperizer and Miruchle. Baperizer contacted notorious swatter Swautistic, but was given a Wichita address (the one where Finch lived in) by Miruhcle who taunted the pair to swat him.
A father of two, Finch didn’t even have anything to do with the dispute. Though Swautistic didn’t accept responsibility for Finch’s death, 25-year-old Tyler Barriss who is believed to be the notorious swatter has been arrested after the incident.
The death of a father isn’t a great way to greet the new year in the gaming community, and it’s absolutely terrible that gamers shenanigans have resulted in the actual loss of life. This ought to be a sign that swatting should finally be put to an end.