A uniquely American phenomenon, the extremely dangerous practice of swatting has taken its most famous victim yet — Kyle ‘Bugha’ Giersdorf.
Who would have thought that swatting would rear its ugly head again with none other than the most recently crowned Fortnite champion — Kyle ‘Bugha’ Giersdorf?
Taking a well-deserved break after winning the Fortnite World Cup Solo at the end of last month, the 16-year-old Giersdorf faced armed police in the middle of a live stream on Twitch.
— Kotaku (@Kotaku) August 12, 2019
Fortnite Champion Kyle ‘Bugha’ Giersdorf Swatted
During the incident, Giersdorf was first interrupted by his father and then promptly left the game. Then, after about 10 minutes, he returns to inform the audience about what happened.
Although the newly-acquired fame may be the most likely reason why Kyle was swatted, his fame was also the primary factor in quickly defusing the potentially-dangerous situation. Namely, one of the officers present during the incident lives in Kyle’s neighborhood, so he quickly put two and two together. If not for that familiarity, things could have gone horribly wrong — as was intended by the hoaxter.
Not a Joke
The deadliest swatting hoax happened in 2017, California. Tyler Barriss made a fake police report that led to the death of Andrew Finch by the police. The malicious hoaxter received his sentence in November 2018 and is set to serve for 20-25 years.
After that highly-publicized incident, the intent behind swatting may be construed as attempted murder.
This time, no harm was done except emotional trauma — but for the sake of prevention, all such incidents should potentially be treated as attempted murder.
Hopefully, the hoaxter will be apprehended soon before he does more harm.
What do you think of the swatting attempt on Fortnite World Cup Solo champion Kyle ‘Bugha’ Giersdorf? Do you think all swatting attempts should be construed as attempted murder? Let us know in the comments below!
Images/videos courtesy of Twitter/@Kotaku, YouTube/Streamer Entertainment, IGDB/Fortnite press kit.