Police believe ‘swatting’ hoax caused American Legion Highway closure

A call for a barricaded person in a Roslindale home Thursday—which shut down both lanes of traffic on American Legion Highway—is being investigated as a “swatting’’ hoax, according Boston police spokesman David Estrada.

Police received the call around 3:50 p.m. Once arriving and securing the area, police did not find anyone at the location, Estrada said.

“Swatting’’ is a hoax in which someone calls in to law enforcement a false report of an active shooter, or hostage situation to evoke an emergency response, and possibly a SWAT team, to an unsuspecting person’s home.

Currently, federal law prohibits fabricating reports of bomb threats or terrorist attacks, but lacks provisions for false claims regarding other types of emergencies.


“The department will do any means necessary to prevent these kinds of hoax situations from happening, and keep people safe,’’ Estrada said.

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