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“Swatting” is one of those terrible events where someone makes a prank call to get the SWAT team to raid someone's home based on false information. Well, as has been the case over the course of the last few months, another gamer has been on the receiving end of a “swatting” prank while live-streaming.
ABC News is reporting that popular Twitch live-streamer Joshua Peters, a U.S. Air Force veteran who lives in St. Cloud, Minnesota, was on the receiving end of the prank while playing Runescape.
While live-streaming to around 60,000 users, the St. Cloud SWAT team raided his home, causing him to get up from his computer and briefly shut off his live-stream. Apparently his brother and mother were in the house at the time and were frightened by the event.
ABC news has reported that the St. Cloud police force confirmed that the event did take place and that they are currently investigating it.
Peters has stated that...
"I see you posting my address. I had police point a gun at my little brothers because of you. They could have been shot, they could have died because you chose to SWAT my stream,"... "I don't give a s*** about what you have against me, or what I did to you. For that, I am at a loss for words. Your gripe is with me so let it be with me and do not involve my family in any way, shape or form with this. They don't deserve that."
According to Peters, he doesn't know exactly who pulled off the prank, but it was someone who was obviously watching the stream while it happened.
Police and Peters are working together to figure out who could have pulled off the prank.
Peters went back to the Runescape stream to address his audience, saying...
"It was more or less a wake-up call that I have to be careful. It can happen to anybody," ... "I came back on after and told everyone what was going on. I knew the person who did it was watching and I wanted to let them know you can't do this."
In a separate but recent “swatting” attack, it resulted in one young man being arrested and charged with up to five years in prison. According to GaMezone, Brandon Wilson, a 19-year-old who goes by the handle of “Famed God” was charged after he falsely reported a murder at a residential home back in July, 2014. This resulted in the SWAT team showing up at the home.
As noted in the article...
“Prosecutors working on the case stated that Wilson also threatened an attack on the victim's banking and Social Security accounts. He told the victim that he would put the victim's father "in debt for life." The threats will form as additional charges, of which Wilson can expect up to five years in prison.”
This combines with other nefarious attacks by less than savory individuals over the past couple of months that resulted in DDoS attacks against PSN and Xbox Live users. It's hard to say that the gaming community will be disappointed to see someone like Wilson or the individual responsible for “swatting” Peters held accountable for their actions. In fact, I imagine a lot of people will be glad to see this kind of behavior punished. Now if only the same can be done for the group who took down Xbox Live and PSN over Christmas.