A Swat team was dispatched to a home that is believed to belong to Parkland school shooting survivor and gun control activist David Hogg’s family Tuesday morning in what is believed to have ultimately been a “swatting” incident.
According to Time, authorities were given reports of a barricaded subject inside the house. Although the report turned out to be baseless, as confirmed by officials, the SWAT team still cleared out the home as a precautionary measure, with local media helicopters at the scene during the incident.
Ultimately, the report turned out to be the subject of a “swatting” hoax, as confirmed by officials. This refers to when a false report of an emergency is made with the intention of getting a SWAT team, hence the “swatting” name, dispatched to a location when there really was no emergency. These incidents could lead to standoffs involving police and can be potentially dangerous.
Hogg was not at the house during the incident
Hogg was not home at the time of the incident, as he was in Washington, D.C. to accept the Robert F. Kennedy human rights award. The incident also notably came out just two days after Hogg graduated from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, which was the site of a February 14 massacre in which 17 people lost their lives.
According to NBC Miami, the home was empty at the time of the incident. That said, officials did search both the home and the surrounding areas. In addition, at least one nearby elementary school was placed on lockdown for over an hour before police were able to clear the area.
In a phone call with WPLG Local 10, Hogg issued the following statement concerning the swatting hoax:
“I think it’s really a distraction from what we’re trying to fix here.”
“Which is the massive gun violence epidemic in this country.”