Will Recent Sentencing For Swatting Gamer Help To Deter Others?

in #gamelast year

In gaming circles, swatting is a cruel prank that a number of individuals have engaged in that involve making false accusations to the police and misleading authorities so that they send a SWAT team to someone's house while they are playing.

It's happened many times in a variety of areas, and this is incredibly dangerous and could easily result in harm to either law enforcement or the gamer who is unexpectedly waiting for the prank to unfold inside.

Swatting has been dubbed a favorite harassment tactic for some gamers,..

But many say that more should be done in punishing those who initiate swatting calls, some suggestions even call for charges of attempted murder for those who attempt to engage in a swatting prank.

People have lost their lives as a result of this practice.

Just recently, a gamer in Ohio has been sentenced to at least 15 months in prison for his actions involved in a swatting case which resulted in a man being killed. After his release he will also be barred from online gaming for at least 2 years. An argument over a video game is what prompted the escalation to eventually include the swatting prank, an action which authorities assert isn't any prank, but a crime.

Not only does this highlight an issue within the gaming community but it also highlights the danger of having an increasingly militarized police force. Because various individuals have been able to make wildly false accusations about other people, which resulted in seemingly little (if any) investigation being conducted before police would boot down the door of an unsuspecting gamer. While swatting is dangerous, so too is booting down someone's door first and asking questions later.

False reports leading to SWAT deployments have doubled since 2011.

A variety of suggestions have been made for trying to help gamers avoid getting swatted and that includes attempting to maintain their privacy online. This could include hiding their IP address with a VPN, and refraining from using any screen name that might help identify them or the area they are from etc.

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This is really scary that there is a system that reacts to any accusation without any investigation into the validity of the caller. How absolutely stupid.

I agree. The fundamental problem is "standards-of-evidence".

What is interesting is the ability to get SWAT used by people making prank calls.

As compared to a guy who kept three women in the basement of his house for more than a year. The neighbors called the cops many times saying something very bad was happening there. No SWATting of this actually dangerous and abusive guy.

And no-knock warrants being issued for minor crimes, with little evidence and no real knowledge that the "perpetrator" resides at the address.

It is interesting that the police can go SWATting innocent gamers and can't figure out how to bust a known drug house. Everyone in the community knows its a drug house, but it just remains there, unmolested for months.

I agree. The fundamental problem is "standards-of-evidence".

I think the sentances for swatting are very harsh that being said when people get killed over a video game or someone not being able to be mature enough to play responsibly there is a price to pay, that being said if no one got hurt should probably be on a case by case basis and now that this has happened a few times you would think police would be more prepared for it thus leading to less accidents and less recourse needed, maybe perhaps some community service or a way lighter sentance would be more appropriate in my opinion 25 years in some cases for making a prank on someone thats extreme... cheers!

Think of it this way,

If I personally sent private mercenaries and bounty hunters to your house who were told that you and your family members were dangerous criminals armed with high-powered weapons, and they broke into your house and held your family at gunpoint in the middle of the night, what punishment do you believe would be appropriate?

Or, imagine that I broke into your house in the middle of the night with several of my friends, armed to the teeth, and held you and your family members at gunpoint. If nobody was permanently (physically) injured or killed, would you still consider that a "harmless prank"?

As a point of simple logic, try putting yourself in their shoes.