Online gaming leads to ‘swatting’ call in Rochester

The Rochester Police Department responded to a call saying someone shot his uncle, possessed an AR-15 and would shoot officers if they showed up to the residence. However, the entire call was a hoax, reports Hubbard Broadcasting affiliate KAAL-TV.

The call was made just after 10 p.m. on Monday. Police responded to a home located on the 3500 block of Birchwood Lane Southwest, set up a perimeter around the residence and attempted to make contact with people inside.

Once police were on a loudspeaker, a 44-year-old man who lives at the home came outside. He gave police permission to go inside and look around. When authorities did so, they didn’t find anyone else in the home.

Rochester Police Capt. Casey Moilanen told KAAL-TV that investigators determined the call came from an IP address in Australia.

The man at the home told police he has a nephew who lives out of state who likes to play online video games with people around the world. The uncle said it was possible that his nephew made someone mad during a game, leading them to make a "swatting" call.

The investigation is active.