Rye PD has made an arrest of a 14 year old boy from Rye in the hoax call incident of last week that had 25-30 police officers decent on a Rye home. The name of the boy was not released because he is a minor. The investigation is ongoing.
July 2, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ARREST IN HOAX CALL/ “SWATTING” INCIDENT IN CITY OF RYE
Contact: Police Commissioner William R. Connors (914) 967-1234
One arrest has been made regarding a hoax call/ “swatting” incident in the City of Rye following a joint investigation by the City of Rye Police Department and the Westchester County Department of Public Safety.
At approximately 2:50 P.M. on Wednesday, June 27, 2012, a call was received by the Village of Rye Brook Police Department from an organization that provides services to the hearing impaired by relaying typed emergency messages to public safety authorities. The caller indicated that three armed men were in his home at 105 North Street in the City of Rye and had shot his sister. He stated that the intruders were barricading the door of the home with couches and that he was hiding under a bed. The final message was “it is getting worse.”
The Village of Rye Brook Police Department relayed the message to the City of Rye Police Department by radio, prompting a large police response by the Rye Police Department and neighboring agencies, including the Village of Rye Brook Police Department, Westchester County Department of Public Safety, Harrison Police Department, Village of Port Chester Police Department, and Metropolitan Transportation Authority Police Department. After establishing a perimeter around the home, officers observed a resident inside, and the desk officer was able to establish contact with her. She was evacuated from the house along with her teenaged son and two friends. Officers then entered the home to ensure that it was safe. It was subsequently established that the call was unfounded.
On Friday, June 29, 2012, detectives from the City of Rye Police Department and the Westchester County Department of Public Safety arrested a fourteen year old male, who resides in the City of Rye, and charged him with Falsely Reporting an Incident in the Third Degree and Reckless Endangerment in the Second Degree. Because of his age, his case has been referred to Family Court; therefore, his identity cannot be released.
This investigation remains active, as detectives work toward identifying additional possible suspects as well as the source of other similar incidents.
“The danger associated with this activity often referred to as “swatting,” in which callers or computer hackers trigger the dispatch of a large emergency response to a false incident, cannot be understated,” said Police Commissioner William Connors. “These are far from prank calls. They divert valuable resources from other duties, often at considerable expense. But more importantly, they put emergency responders and members of the public in serious danger from multiple hazards, including vehicle accidents as public safety personnel race to emergency scenes; as heavy weapons and equipment are deployed; and when officers approach incident scenes based on the information they have been given, and an innocent but threatening reaction by an unsuspecting victim can lead to tragic results. There is also the corresponding danger that by taking a measured approach to a call based on the fact that it may be a hoax, the response to a legitimate incident may be diminished, jeopardizing both the responders and the potential victims. The quick arrest in this case should serve notice on people engaged in this type of activity that they will be caught and held accountable for their actions.”
This arrest is the result of outstanding investigative work, particularly by Detectives Jake Chittenden and John Wood of the City of Rye Police Department and Detective Daniel Carfi of the Westchester County Department of Public Safety. “The detectives from both agencies brought extraordinary skills to the table, but an even more important factor in this investigation was exceptional interagency cooperation, both during the initial patrol response to the scene by multiple agencies and during the investigation,” said Commissioner Connors. “The team has worked seamlessly, and will continue to do so as the investigation continues. On behalf of the City of Rye, I extend our thanks to Commissioner George Longworth and his department for providing their services with only one goal in mind: the safety of our community.”