If you’ve never heard of the “SWATting” prank in video games then you can thank God right now that it has never happened to you. SWATting is a dastardly horrible concept that emerges from the filthy, putrid, darkness of the adolescent gamer’s mind. The idea behind SWATting is this: You’re watching a friend or favorite channel star upload live gameplay to Twitch. You think to yourself, “Wow, this is live! That means if we call the police and report a bomb threat at his house, we’ll actually get to see the SWAT time arrest him in real time! That’s awesome! Let’s do it!” Then you follow through and make it a reality.
Funny right? Well, it might be if it weren’t a matter of reckless endangerment of the person and household being SWATted as well as a gross misuse of the tax dollars allocated to the SWAT team departments of our police forces. Not to mention calling in false crimes and threats to the authorities is completely illegal. So it should be of no surprise that when 19 year old Brandon Willson, known to some as, “Famed God,” “used a computer to contact Naperville’s 911 center on July 10, 2014, and claimed a murder had happened at a home in the city,” he was arrested and is now awaiting extradition (via Chicago Sun Times).
According to the Sun Times, in addition to the SWATting incident, Wilson “hacked into the gaming consoles to obtain or change personal information belonging to two people — one from Naperville, and another from Plainfield […] He also threatened the Naperville resident that he would access the person’s bank and Social Security accounts, and put the person’s father “in debt for life,” prosecutors claim.”
According to the State Attorney’s Office, “He is awaiting extradition to Illinois, and faces up to five years in prison if convicted.”
Listen gamers, we understand that you think SWATting can be a barrel of laughs, but please also keep in mind that you are not only putting yourself in legal jeopardy, but also endangering the lives and well being of those whom you are pranking.