A couple of years ago, a dispute between Call of Duty players resulted in one of them “swatting” the other, which unfortunately resulted in a man being killed. The person behind the call, Tyler Barriss, has since been sentenced to 20 years in jail for making false emergency calls to authorities.
This is according to a report from Associated Press (via Polygon) where Barriss pleaded guilty in November last year on federal charges of making a false report resulting in a death, cyberstalking, conspiracy, and false threats. To make matters worse, the person who ended up dead had nothing to do with their dispute at all.
For those unfamiliar with the story, back in 2017, a man by the name of Casey Viner recruited Barriss to swat another player, Shane Gaskill, after a dispute between Viner and Gaskill. He provided Barriss with an address that he thought was where Gaskill stayed, but the problem was that it was the wrong address and it was the home of 28-year old Andrew Finch.
Police arrived at Finch’s house under the impression that he had killed one person and had two more hostages and killed Finch when they thought he was reaching for a weapon. It was later discovered that Finch was not armed and did not know any of the men involved. Viner and Gaskill have since also been charged.
We have heard of multiple swatting attempts made in the past, although this could possibly be the first death related as a result. We’ve seen how many gamers have gotten upset during gaming sessions, where there was an instance last year of a 45-year old man being arrested after threatening an 11-year old boy in a game of Fortnite.