There's an awful prank going around the gaming community that's extremely dangerous. It's called "swatting," and it could put innocent people's lives at risk.
Swatting is when rival gamers report gunshots at the address of another gamer to police. This puts the safety of the other gamer and anyone else in the building at risk because the police have to respond like they would to any active shooter situation.
A Colorado man was recently the victim of the prank and caught the whole thing on camera. He's playing Counter Strike on his computer when he hears SWAT officers clearing the building. He can be heard saying "I think we're getting swatted" before the officers enter his office.
As five heavily armed officers barge into the room, he pulls off his headphones, drops his controller and gets down on the floor.
One officer shouts: "What's your name?" while another sends a radio message saying they have "one in custody".
This might be a prank for the gamers, but it's not funny for other people in the building or the officers involved. Luckily, the gamer was cooperative with police and nothing terrible happened.
Later Denver police said in a statement: "Fortunately there were no injuries today, but a massive law enforcement response wastes resources and greatly increases the chances of innocent people being injured or killed."
Making bogus 911 calls is illegal for a reason. And you can bet the police are going to find the people who did it and make sure they face charges.