Milo W. August 14, 2019
Fortnite World Cup champion Kyle “Bugha” Giersdorf was swatted during a recent Twitch stream.
The 16-year-old was in the middle of a match when his father informed him that law enforcement had arrived at his door. Bugha quickly realizes that he is being swatted and steps away from his setup, leaving both his teammates and audience confused over what happened.
Fortunately, no one was harmed in the incident. Bugha returned to his setup about 10 minutes later and confirmed that he and his family had indeed been swatted.
"Yeah, I got swatted...Dude, they pulled up...I was lucky because the one officer, he lives in our neighborhood...They come in with guns, bro," Bugha said.
Swatting is the criminal act of deceiving law enforcement into sending a police response to another person’s address. This is a dangerous online prank that has affected other livestreamers before.
Last year, streamer and former professional Overwatch player Felix "xQc" Lengyel’s home was raided by the police while he was on-camera, similar to this incident with Bugha. Luckily for both streamers, neither situation ended in tragedy.
Other victims have not been so lucky.
In 2017, Kansas resident Andrew Fitch was killed in his home by police officers who were responding to a false report of a hostage situation. The hoax was perpetrated by Call of Duty player Tyler Barriss who was angered by a teammate and attempted to retaliate by sending officers after him. The teammate gave a false address, which happened to be Fitch’s.
Barriss plead guilty to charges stemming from the case, and was sentenced to 20 years in jail.
This prank on Bugha may not have resulted with physical consequences but it easily could have gotten out of hand. Hopefully the young champion will never again experience a prank this dangerous and cruel.