Former police officer discusses the dangers of swatting

Published: Aug. 12, 2022 at 9:46 PM CDT
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BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - Federal authorities are involved after a possible hostage situation in Bryan turned out to be a hoax. This was a form of swatting, a dangerous prank with potentially deadly consequences.

Greg Fremin, a 34-year veteran of the Houston Police Department and professor of Criminal Justice at Sam Houston State University, joined First News at Four to discuss this criminal harassment tactic.

The terminology is relatively new, but swatting has been around for a while. Simply put, swatting is when a select group of people make bogus calls to the police.

“It’s a very dangerous event because it’s pulling these resources away from other areas where they’re much needed at,” explained Fremin.

When these people call in it’s difficult to know if their claims are true or not, so law enforcement will show up in full force for the chance that there is legitimate danger.

According to Fremin there are technological means of finding out where the swatting calls were placed from, so the people responsible will be brought to justice. These criminals have not only jail time to look forward to, but other consequences as well.

“It’s definitely some jail time and there’s some civil liabilities involved in this as well. When you think of all the resources that were expended on there, there’s a monetary amount. The PD, the first responding agencies, they can take civil action against this individual on top of the criminal activity charges that can be brought against them.”

Watch the full interview in the player above.

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