The Family home of David Hogg, a Majory Stoneman Douglas High School graduate turned gun control advocate, was the subject of a swatting prank Tuesday morning.
An anonymous caller told police a man armed with an AR-15 had a hostage inside the home, which prompted a response by SWAT teams and officers. However, the situation was resolved once they determined no one was home.
Hogg, who was with his mother in Washington, D.C. accepting a human rights award at the time of the call, dismissed the incident. “It’s merely a prank. It’s an attempt to distract from what we’re trying to do, which is save children’s lives and fix these issues at hand,” he told local media.
Swatting involves a person falsely reporting to authorities a situation that would merit a response by a police SWAT team and some cases have had deadly results. Authorities responded to Tuesday’s call by sending SWAT officers, multiple police vehicles and helicopters to the area.
Hogg described the prankster as “somebody that is trying to distract from these issues and willing to waste hundreds of thousands of dollars — of taxpaying dollars — and waste the resources of law enforcement.”
The recent high school graduate has been an outspoken activist along fellow students after a 19-year-old gunman murdered 17 people and injured 17 others at their school in Parkland, Florida in February. Hogg had led calls for tougher gun laws and the public to pressure businesses to break or avoid relationships with the NRA and pro-gun politicians. In response, he has been personally attacked and harassed by political opponents and the subject of conspiracy theories.