LAPD Frustrated as More Celebs Targeted by 'Swatting'

PHOTO: Officials want to end the 911 prank calls which send LAPD S.W.A.T. teams to celebrity homes.

It's the VIP list that no celebrity wants to be on, but the number of stars who have been subject to the "swatting" hoax is growing longer.

The prank relies on dramatic fake 911 calls, which trigger the dispatch of a number of police officers or a SWAT team to a celebrity's home. But when the police arrive, they find no crime being committed.

Over the last week, the homes of Justin Timberlake, Selena Gomez and Rihanna were all targets of "swatting" hoaxes.

While there have been more than 400 "swatting" calls nationwide, the prank has been mainly associated with celebrity homes. When Timberlake's home was targeted, a tour guide on a passing Hollywood tour bus had to explain to the passengers why police were present.

The hoaxes have become a nightmare for the Los Angeles Police Department, which has had difficulty tracking down the callers. Unable to tell which calls are real and which are hoaxes, officers have to respond as if each call is a real threat.

"We are responding with the mindset of possibly encountering a subject or suspects with a weapon or multiple weapons," LAPD spokeswoman Officer Sara Faden said.

Last year a 12-year-old was arrested for placing a hoax 911 call that sent a SWAT team to the home of Ashton Kutcher.

The staff in Kutcher's home was detained at gunpoint before the police determined the call had been a hoax.

Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...
See It, Share It
PHOTO: Officials from Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States wait for the start of a meeting on Irans nuclear program at the Beau Rivage Palace Hotel in Lausanne, Switzerland, March 31, 2015.
Brendan Smialowski/AP Photo
PHOTO: Warren Jeffs is seen in this Dec. 1, 2010 police photo released by the Reagan County Sheriffs Department.
Regan County Sheriffs Departent/AP Photo
PHOTO: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted this image of the the green roof on top of the new Facebook building in Menlo Park, Calif. to his Facebook timeline on March 30, 2015.
Mark Zuckerberg/Facebook
PHOTO: Donovan Lyles Jr. and Carole Cross
Carole Cross/Captain Fishbones and the Pirates of the Forgiven