Missouri pushes for tougher penalties after 'swatting' death

Missouri pushes for tougher penalties after 'swatting' death
Posted at 3:07 PM, Jan 19, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-19 16:07:39-05

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri lawmaker is pushing for tougher penalties after a death that resulted from a prank call to police.

KRCG-TV reports that Republican Rep. Bill Kidd has filed legislation to hold pranksters civilly and criminally liable if they make a call resulting in an emergency response.

The push comes amid the rise of "swatting," a prank in which someone calls the police to report an emergency that requires officers to send a SWAT team. The prank turned deadly last month when police fatally shot a Kansas man at his home after receiving a call about a shooting and kidnapping. The alleged caller, Tyler Barriss, faces manslaughter charges in the death.

Kidd says existing false-report laws aren't suited for police hoaxes resulting in injury or death. Missouri has no state law dealing with swatting.