Release Date: February 20th, 2020 - 10:55am
Originator: D/Sergeant, Barrett Gabriel, 2 District Criminal Investigations Bureau, 905 825 4777 ext. 2215
Contact: Detective, Ryan Smith, 2 District Criminal Investigations Bureau, 905 825 4777 ext. 2216
The Halton Regional Police Service (HRPS) has made an arrest following an investigation into two swatting incidents that took place in Oakville earlier this year.
"Swatting" is a prank call to the police, but on a much more sophisticated level. A caller makes a false report with the goal of having numerous police and emergency resources dispatched to an ongoing critical incident.
On February 19 2020, a young person from Oakville was arrested and a search warrant was executed at their residence. The party arrested cannot be identified under the Youth Criminal Justice Act.
The individual has been charged with two counts of public mischief and two counts of criminal harassment and has been released from custody with a future court date.
The charges follow an investigation conducted by the 2 District Criminal Investigations Bureau into two incidents that took place on January 25 and 28, 2020. On those dates, the HRPS was contacted and attended an Oakville residence after receiving reports of criminal acts at that location. It was quickly determined that criminal acts were fictitious and investigated as a swatting event.
Swatting calls involve the response of numerous frontline police officers, dispatchers and communicators in our 911 centre who are all reserved for service to a variety of legitimate community needs. False reports like these carry rippling impacts on our community's safety and well-being. The risk to residents is significant.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Ryan Smith of the 2 District Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905-825-4747 ext. 2216.
Tips can also be submitted anonymously to Crime Stoppers. "See something? Hear something? Know something? Contact Crime Stoppers" at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.ca.