I saw this article on the daily mail today, it made me laugh.
An army of police and a SWAT team stormed a Long Island home yesterday under the belief a teen had shot dead his mother and brother and was ready to kill again.
But within minutes of arriving, they discovered the hostage call was an act of revenge by a disgruntled 'Call of Duty' gamer who'd just been defeated.
The prank caller told police over Skype that he was 17-year-old Rafael Castillo, and 'I just killed my mother and I might shoot more people', New York Post reported.
However Rafael was merely using virtual firearms, his mother Maria was in the kitchen making coffee and his brother Jose had just returned home from lunch.
Cops are now hunting the prankster who gave police the teen’s home address in a dangerous game called swatting - an increasingly common hoax which is putting law enforcement on high alert.
In the two hour standoff, authorities flew helicopters over the Laurelton Boulevard home and rushed in more than 60 officers, including elite members of Nassau County’s special operations unit.
Police in full emergency mode surrounded the home, called for the teen to come out and even called him on his cellphone, but he continued to play video games.
He had headphones on and apparently couldn't hear his phone or the drama unfolding outside, Huffington Post reported.
Rafael's mother, 54-year-old Maria Castillo, was in the kitchen when she saw police swarm her home.
'He told me, ‘Go out! Go out!'' she said. 'I [said], ‘What happened?’ They said, ‘Somebody killed somebody in your house.’ I told the police my kid’s home, my kid’s on the computer. He don’t know what happened.'
Rafael's brother Jose Castillo, 21, told The New York Post the prank was likely an act of revenge.
'Some guy threatened to swat him,' he said. 'He was p****d that he had lost.'
He added: 'I thought there was a fire at my house. I ran up and saw my mom running out, I didn’t know what was going on.
'Then one of the police officers said somebody called and said that the mother and brother of somebody in this house was killed. I said ‘how is that possible if she’s right there and I’m right here?''
Police are now hunting the hoaxster by tracing his electronic footprints, with sources saying the emergency response cost about $100,000.
Law enforcers say the game of swatting is becoming increasingly common, and it involves making a hoax call to 911 to draw a response from law enforcement, usually a SWAT team.
Long Beach police commissioner Michael Tangney said yesterday's incident was just the latest example of the 'swatting' game.
'In this … bizarre world of swatting, you get points for the helicopter, for the police cars, for the SWAT team, for the type of entry,' he told CBS. 'It’s very sophisticated. Unfortunately, it’s very dangerous.'
He said the prankster will be arrested when found.
'If we determine who made this call, there will be an arrest,' Tangney told the Herald. 'He did something so, so foolish, and so dangerous. I’m very angry - it’s a tremendous waste of taxpayer resources, it’s a tremendous danger to law enforcement.'