December 4, 2018 8:25 am

Prank phone calls to St. Thomas police under investigation

St. Thomas police are investigating two prank phone calls that triggered emergency response services in the town.

@STPSmedia / Twitter

Police in St. Thomas, Ont., say they’re investigating the origin of two high-risk phone calls that sparked an emergency response on Monday but turned out to be a harassment tactic called “swatting.”

Swatting is a practice in which a person prank calls emergency services in order to draw a large police presence to a particular area.

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The first call was about a family being held hostage. It came in around 8:30 a.m., but when officers arrived at the address provided during the call, they discovered a family inside and asleep — completely unaware of the report that had been made.

Later, Arthur Voaden Secondary School activated a code red and phoned 911 after getting a call that a man with a weapon was inside their building.

Police officers say they didn’t find a suspect during a site inspection.

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After searching both areas thoroughly, police say they determined there had never been a threat and there was no threat to public safety.

St. Thomas police are investigating where the calls came from and the identity of the caller.

They’re urging anyone with information to contact them at 519-631-1224 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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