A Crackdown on ‘Swatting’

(April 24) – Rep. Jeff Bridges’ bill to crack down on a surge of false reports of active shooters won bipartisan House approval today.

SB18-068, sponsored in the House by Reps. Bridges, D-Greenwood Village, and Kevin Van Winkle, R-Highlands Ranch, takes on the crime called “swatting” – the false reporting of an active shooter, bomb threat or other deadly situation for the purpose of pranking the victim, who has no idea that the local SWAT team and other emergency responders are about to descend on the victim’s house.

“It’s not funny to falsely deploy a SWAT team,” Rep. Bridges said. “It wastes tax dollars, and people have been injured or killed as officers rush to respond to what they think is a life-threatening situation.”

The bill creates the crime of false reporting of an emergency, a class 1 misdemeanor that can be bumped up to a felony depending on the harm caused by the false report.

After today’s 64-1 House vote, the bill goes back to the Senate for consideration of House amendments.


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