Thread: 911 Prank?

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    Default 911 Prank?

    So at around 0023 Hours on Saturday May 21, we were paged for all available man-power to our respective stations. We came to find out we were looking for a car accident. A young male caller made 4 phone calls to his friends cell phone within 7 minutes. On each call he was crying and made reference to 3 points in our fire district, saying that his car went off the road on a bad turn (didn't say what turn specifically) and that it was stuck between two trees and he couldn't get out of the car. He also mentioned not knowing where a passenger was. We searched the area for quite awhile before our search was called off. We came to find out that the kid made a prank call. My question for all of you is can he be charged with anything legally? He did not call 911 himself, but called his friends which led them to believe he was in trouble. After they searched the area themselves and found nothing, they called 911. Just wondering what he could be held accountable for.
    9/11/01 D.C. Joseph "Uncle Joe" Marchbanks
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    I would think they would be able to charge him with something, just not sure what........
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    The only think I could think of would be filing a false report but that might be a stretch.
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    Im sure there is something....
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    No one filed a false report. The people who called it in were reporting what they thought was a legitimate emergency. I don't know what statute there is against telling someone else you are hurt when your're not.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Like I said it would be a stretch but isnt that what the runaway bride did? called her husband and said she was kidnapped or did she call the police. That's why i said it would be a strech. Im sure there is something they can get him on.
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    Yes he can be charged. Because of his actions he caused the response of emergency personnel. Even though he did not directly cause the response he is responsible for his actions. It is similar to making a malicious false alarm.

    Remember a few weeks ago where a female called the police and stated that she had been kidnapped. Latter it was all determined to be a hoax. The call was not even made to an agency in her state. She was arrested by local and federal authorities and remanded to custody while awaiting a disposition. In her case there was federal jurisdiction since her calls to another state.
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    Funny that you mention she called another state. Our subject was in New Jersey when he was apprehended today, or so I'm told. He was there the night he made the calls, which were to friends here in New York where we got paged for the incident. We know very little details on his "detainment". The source I heard this from only knew that the police had "located" the prankster, he was not sure what if any action had been taken yet. Malicious false alarms are certainly dangerous, but I was more ticked off that I was woken out of bed for that when we had to be up for drill @ 7 the next morning. I'm a college student and 2 back-to-back days of waking up @ 7 is detrimental to my sleep patterns. I was normally waking up around noon at school. But then again that was scratched this morning for an MVA that we got turned around for. Tough life, but somebody has to do it
    9/11/01 D.C. Joseph "Uncle Joe" Marchbanks
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    Tim
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    BFDLT32,

    Are you talking about the runaway bride? If you are, I don't recall seeing where she was charged with anything.

    T13one12, at the very least the agencies involved could pursue a civl action to recover the costs of looking for the wreck. If he's a minor or for that matter, a first offender, a criminal charge isn't going to result in any real punishment.

    Hit him where it hurts, in the wallet.

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    Originally posted by EFD840
    BFDLT32,

    T13one12, at the very least the agencies involved could pursue a civl action to recover the costs of looking for the wreck. If he's a minor or for that matter, a first offender, a criminal charge isn't going to result in any real punishment.

    Hit him where it hurts, in the wallet.
    I agree. If at all possible I would sit down, figure out the costs for your department (man hours, fuel, operations, etc...) and send him a bill. If for no other reason than to make a paoint and get the last laugh.
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    Only thing we could charge for is the fuel. We are 100% volunteer. Although if the town raises a suit then the Police can charge the kid for the OT they picked up that night. Almost 4 hours worth of it.
    9/11/01 D.C. Joseph "Uncle Joe" Marchbanks
    Battalion 12
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    Tim
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    Pair Arraigned in Hoax That Led to Police Standoff

    May 9, 2005 2:38 pm US/Eastern
    (1010 WINS) (New Brunswick, NJ) A Texas woman and a New Jersey man pleaded innocent Monday to making prank phone calls to police that touched off a six-hour SWAT team standoff.

    Fatin A. Ward and Wadu Jackson made brief court appearances stemming from the March 22 calls that resulted in a massive armed response to a house near Rutgers University.

    Ward, 23, of Arlington, Texas, did not speak during her hearing, at which her public defender, Richard D. Barker, entered the plea. She remains in custody on $100,000 bail.

    Shortly after the standoff, Ward told The Associated Press she was playing a telephone game called ``bombing'' in which people make bogus emergency calls and then see how many law enforcement officers respond.

    Her mother said Ward has a history of mental illness and had been refusing to take medication.

    Outside court, Barker said that despite Ward's statements ``her defense is going to be she's not guilty. There's obviously going to be more conversations about the events, and exploration of her history. Until that time, our stance is, she's not guilty. I don't know what she said she did. I don't know if what she said she did constitutes a criminal act.''

    He declined to say if Ward would pursue a diminished capacity defense, and said she would be getting a private lawyer later this week.

    Jackson, 20, of Irvington, has been free on bail. He had little to say to reporters.

    ``Ask the girl that did it. Don't ask me nothing,'' Jackson said.

    Both have been indicted on two counts each of conspiracy and creating a false public alarm. They could get as much as 10 years in prison.

    Authorities said Ward told a New Brunswick police dispatcher that she was a 14-year-old girl who had been raped and was handcuffed to a bed. Jackson is accused of calling police after Ward did and threatening to kill his hostage if police intervened.

    Prosecutors allege the pair made a similar prank call in January, resulting in police responding twice to a New Brunswick home on unfounded reports of a shooting and a sexual assault.

    The March calls resulted in a massive police response to a house in New Brunswick that lasted for six hours. The standoff ended when three teenagers who were in a third-floor apartment walked out of the house, unaware that their residence had been targeted by a prank caller. The teens were taken into custody and then released without being charged.

    Ward and others are suspected of similar hoaxes on other New Jersey, Pennsylvania and South Carolina towns, according to police.
    Last edited by GeorgeWendtCFI; 05-24-2005 at 06:44 AM.

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    I would think that they could get the kid for inducing panic. Isn't that what they did to the nitwit runaway bride?

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    Originally posted by tk1918
    I would think that they could get the kid for inducing panic. Isn't that what they did to the nitwit runaway bride?
    What is the statutory citation for "inducing panic"?

    Can you cite some documentation that the "runaway bride" has been charged with anything?

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    Some states have abuse of the 911 system as a misdemeanor. But it depends on the state.

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    Regardless of what laws there are or aren't, I can say without a soubt that his friends will not be charged with anything. They reported an emergency they though was taking place. Hell, they did exactly what they should have done.

    Again, I don't know what laws apply to the nitwit that was pretending to be in an accident.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    His friends definately did the right thing, well to an extent. Had this been a real accident, they should have called 911 right away before taking it upon themselves to look for the kid.

    On a side note, we just got yet another 911 prank. God I love sitting in the aerial for 2 hours waiting for PD to clear the building.
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    Tim
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    Well, remember a lot of kids, especially teens will take it upon themselves to help their friends before the thought of 911 becomes something on the radar. For example, if you skateboarded off the roof of a house while setting your cloths on fire, how many kids do you think would call 911 when you end up with a leg facing backwards and your hair burnt off. Very few. They will however help you limp into the house, get you lots of ice, and take pictures for the internet.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Originally posted by TrojanHorse
    The kid called his buddies and reported his problem to them. He did not tell them to call 911. The buddies actred on their own to call 911. The kid who started it all had no control over the actions of his friends. Therefore, the kid cannot be charged for anything except perhaps for telling a lie to his friends. Is that illegal? The friends believed they were reporting a true emergency, hence no crime here either.

    Heck, ever been called to a structure fire as a passerby saw a large amount of smoke only to show up and see a small camp fire. Any charges there?
    I'll wait till the 911 tapes are played before I judge how involved the "kid" is.
    IAFF

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    The March calls resulted in a massive police response to a house in New Brunswick that lasted for six hours. The standoff ended when three teenagers who were in a third-floor apartment walked out of the house, unaware that their residence had been targeted by a prank caller.
    WTF? How does a police standoff last for 6 hours when one of the parties is not even aware that it is involved in a police standoff? Or am I reading this wrong?
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    Originally posted by dmleblanc
    WTF? How does a police standoff last for 6 hours when one of the parties is not even aware that it is involved in a police standoff? Or am I reading this wrong?
    it's a two family house. the family above was involved, the one below wasn't. and IIRC, the lower residence was filled with college students, and when it comes to college students, they can block out the entire world if it isn't directly affectin them.

    go figure.
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    Just saw this morning that the runaway bride was indicted yesterday in GA for one count of making a false police report and one count of making a false statement to police.

    Yahoo! News - Wilbanks Indicted on False Crime Charge

    We'll have to see if it ever leads to a conviction though.
    Chris Gaylord
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    Depending on the state he could be charged with misuse of the 911 system. Examples have been set here of people misusing the system.


    On a side note, I LOVE my county having Phase two wireless 911 system. We got two prank calls two nights in a row. Next day i went into the communications center, got the coordinates off the call printout and found the calls to be placed from a location in another town, and got the exact physical address of where he called from. We decided not to press charges tho, unless a third call occurred.

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    Essex charges suspect in 17 'bombings'
    Phone hoaxes caused havoc
    Friday, June 03, 2005
    BY WILLIAM KLEINKNECHT
    Star-Ledger Staff
    The Texas woman whose hoax telephone call produced a six-hour standoff by the New Brunswick police two months ago told an investigator she has carried out "hundreds" of similar episodes, including many in Essex County, a prosecutor said yesterday.

    Fatin Ward's alleged statement to an investigator was revealed as the 23-year-old appeared in Superior Court in Newark to face new charges that she made 17 hoax calls to authorities in Essex County between December and March.

    Theodore Brown, a chief assistant Essex County prosecutor, said Ward made calls to police or fire departments in six towns, reporting serious incidents that brought a full emergency response.

    "Innocent people were put in harm's way or placed in handcuffs," Brown said.

    Brown said that as Ward was being interviewed by Middlesex County investigators in Fort Worth, Texas on March 30, she was asked how many times she engaged in "bombing," street slang for hoax calls to emergency responders.

    "Her response was 'hundreds,'" Brown said.

    With Ward standing nearby in a bright green jail outfit, her feet in irons and her hands shackled to her waist, Brown called her a flight risk and asked Judge Michael Casale for a bail of $100,000.

    Casale granted Brown's request, despite the objection of public defender Susan Freedman, and added $100,000 to the $50,000 bail already holding Ward in Middlesex County.

    Ward and a friend, Wadu Jackson, 20, of Irvington, have been charged with two hoax incidents in New Brunswick, including one on March 22 in which Ward claimed to be a woman handcuffed to a bed and being raped by her stepfather.

    Police surrounded the house for six hours with sharpshooters training their guns on the windows. A section of the city's downtown was paralyzed, with streets closed and schools locked down, until three young people who had done nothing wrong came out with their hands raised.

    Ward, who lives in Arlington, Texas, but says she grew up in Teaneck, told The Star-Ledger in a March 23 telephone interview that she made the call because Jackson had a dispute with a 16-year-old girl who lived at the home at 226 Seaman St. She said it was all part of the game of "bombing," which is promoted on telephone chat lines linked to the Internet.

    After Ward's arrest in New Brunswick, the police investigation turned to a number of Essex County communities whose police have received hoax calls recently. Brown said his office was able to charge Ward with nine incidents in East Orange, two in Belleville, two in Bloomfield, two in Montclair and one each in Glen Ridge and West Orange. The complaints were signed in April and May.

    Jackson is not charged in any Essex cases.

    In Belleville on Jan.17, Ward told police she was being held by a man with a gun, according to one of the complaints. On Jan. 6 in Bloomfield, the story was that she was being raped and held hostage in a home on Leslie Street. She allegedly told Glen Ridge police about a shooting and domestic violence situation on Forest Avenue on Feb. 28. Four of the calls in East Orange were false reports of fires.

    For 16 of the incidents, she is charged with issuing false public alarms, a third-degree crime that would typically involve no jail time for a single offense.

    Prosecutors in Middlesex County have already extended a plea offer to Ward that involves prison time, and plea negotiations are expected in Essex. Casale agreed to schedule a hearing on the status of those negotiations before Ward's charges are submitted to a grand jury. She has already been indicted in Middlesex.

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    Jennifer Wilbanks pled no contest to her charges of miss use of the 911 system today and got 2 yrs probation.
    "Let's Roll." Todd Beamer 9/11 first soldier in the war on terror

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