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 January 17, 2024

White House the latest victim of increased incidents of 'swatting'

Incidents of "swatting" high-profile political figures have been on the rise, and it's happening to those on both sides of the political aisle.

Swatting involves someone calling a local police or fire department and falsely reporting a crime or emergency taking place at a residence or building, causing a rapid and large response.

According to Breitbart, the latest swatting incident involved the White House.

On Monday morning, a caller reportedly notified the District of Columbia Fire and Emergency Medical Services that the White House was on fire and people were trapped inside.

Breitbart noted:

“Fire in the White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue,” a Washington, DC, dispatcher said at 7:04 a.m.

Authorities gave an “all clear” order at 7:15 AM.

The call triggered a large first-responder response, but upon arriving at the scene and coordinating with U.S. Secret Service, it was quickly determined to be nothing more than a prank call.

It was noted that President Joe Biden was not in the White House at the time of the incident, as he was staying at Camp David.

One of the reasons why swatting incidents continue to happen is because of the difficulty to trace the call back to the culprit. Thanks to internet technology, phone numbers can be "spoofed" and make it virtually impossible to trace.

"Someone who was reached at the callback number for the 911 report indicated they did not place it, a source told the Associated Press, indicating it was likely spoofed," the Daily Mail reported.

In recent weeks, several politicians, including Democrats and Republicans, and judges, have been swatted -- some of them multiple times.

The New York Post reported:

Republicans who have been swatted include Georgia Rep. Majorie Taylor Greene, whose home was raided by authorities on Christmas Day following a suicide hotline tip, New York Rep. Brandon Williams and Florida Sen. Rick Scott.

Prominent Democrats who have been targeted include Boston Mayor Michelle Wu, left-wing billionaire George Soros and Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows, who gained national attention by removing former President Donald Trump from the state’s 2024 ballot last month.

The White House reportedly refused to comment on the swatting incident.

Hopefully, authorities will find a way to cut down on swatting incidents, as it's a waste of time and resources. It's also potentially deadly if there's an actual emergency happening and crews are unavailable because they're dealing with hoax calls.

Written By:
Ryan Ledendecker

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