Hoax ‘swatting’ call draws large police presence to Groveland home

Nearby homes were evacuated as a precaution.

Groveland police are investigating a hoax 911 call that they are calling a “swatting” incident. The fake call caused swaths of armed officers to descend on a home in the town Wednesday night.

“Swatting” is when someone makes a fake 911 call claiming that a violent crime has happened with the goal of getting a large number of armed police officers to respond to a school, business, or home as a prank. It is a federal crime.

Groveland police said in a news release Thursday that they were called to a home on Marjorie Street around 8:45 p.m. after a caller told emergency services they had attacked someone in the home and would attack first responders.


Following procedure for such incidents, Groveland police and firefighters responded to the home, along with officers from neighboring towns and state troopers, police said. Nearby homes were also evacuated as a precaution.

Police said they soon determined that the call was a hoax and that no one had been attacked. After a sweep of the area, police allowed neighbors to return to their homes around 10 p.m.

Police are still investigating the incident, and no arrests have been made.

Many “swatting” incidents have been reported in New England in the last year.

In early December, over a dozen schools in New Hampshire were targeted with fake calls on the same morning, sending panic throughout the communities. The month before, 10 schools in Maine received a similar call all on the same day, prompting widespread lockdowns.

Last March, a home in Taunton became the target of a “swatting” prank, causing residents in four nearby homes to evacuate.


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