Willimantic Police Investigate Swatting Incident

Police lights flashing behind police caution tape

Police are investigating after what they believe was a swatting incident on Saturday night.

The police department received a call through the normal complaint line about a possible murder suicide in progress at a multi-family home within the city around 10:30 p.m., officers said.

The caller, who authorities said identified himself as a juvenile male that lived at the home, told dispatchers that he was tired of being beat up by his father. The caller then went on to say that he had a gun, was planning on killing his parents and then killing himself before hanging up the phone, investigators added.

When police arrived, they said the surrounding streets were closed down and the Special Operations Group responded. A reverse 911 call was also placed to the surrounding neighborhood to shelter in place and neighbors that were directly next to the home were evacuated for safety, investigators added.

Numerous attempts were made by police to contact the caller and any other people within the home via phone, but were unsuccessful, police said.

Using the Willimantic Police rescue vehicle's public address system, investigators said contact was finally made with the upstairs residents, who evacuated the residence safely. When police spoke with them, officers said they learned that nobody lives at the home matching the stated identity of the caller.

While police attempted to make contact with anyone else within the home, the residents of the downstairs apartment arrived from another location and said nobody should be in the house, police said. The apartment was searched by officers and authorities said nobody was found inside.

After talking to the residents, authorities said the residents stated they did not know the caller and did not have any clue why the caller chose their apartment.

Once the residence was determined to be safe, all neighbors were allowed to return to their homes.

According to investigators, the Willimantic Police Department is now treating the incident as swatting. Police said swatting is an extremely dangerous action that has the potential to create extreme danger for both the public and the police.

Police are currently investigating the origins of the call and when the perpetrator is located, he or she will be charged, officers said.

Anyone with information about this incident should contact Det. Lt. Charles Miller.

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