Yet another streamer has been made a victim of swatting.
Apex Legends pro Phillip “ImperialHal” Dosen was streaming the battle royale when cops showed up at his house. His teammates listened in horror as ImperialHal left his desk to talk with the officers. They can be heard telling ImperialHal to raise his hands and get on the ground, most likely believing that a serious crime had been committed.
After the interaction, ImperialHal told his followers that he’d been swatted. He seemed pretty calm, even saying the officers were “pretty civil.” The Apex Legends streamer said the cops didn’t do anything “crazy” but did have “pistols and shit.”
Just got Swatted , Nice, everything is fine tho
— ImperialHal (@TSM_ImperialHal) January 6, 2021
What is swatting?
Swatting is when someone makes a call to the police, claiming there’s been a serious crime at a specific address. The address is usually the home of a streamer or gamer who is often live streaming while playing a game. This sends the S.W.A.T. team to the individual’s house, which is quite dangerous because the officers believe something dangerous is taking place upon their arrival, such as a bomb threat or a hostage situation.
wtf @tsm_imperialhal just got swatted on stream.
He is ok now though but wow. pic.twitter.com/vkojuCL5va
— iLootGames (@iLootGames) January 6, 2021
Swatting is illegal and dangerous. In 2019, a swatting “prank” led to the death of a Call of Duty player, Andrew Finch. When he opened his door while unaware of the situation, he was shot by officers surrounding his property. The Call of Duty player who called the police, Tyler Rai Barriss, was sentenced to 20 years in prison as a result.
Even this serious incident hasn’t stopped people from “pranking” streamers through this dangerous method. Tyler “Tfue” Tenney was swatted while playing Minecraft at the end of 2020. Despite the possible danger he was in, one viewer trolled Tfue with a donation in which they claimed to be the prank caller.
In ImperialHal’s case, the officers seemed aware that it was a swatting incident. They suggested he set up a VPN to avoid future swatting incidents.