Boyd Introduces Bill to Curb 'Swatting'

Boyd Introduces Bill to Curb 'Swatting'

Daniel Molina
Daniel Molina
|
February 11, 2021

This week, Florida State Senator Jim Boyd (R) filed Senate Bill 1234, which is a false reports of crimes bill. The bill aims to act “as an effective deterrent for those who have used swatting as a tool to harass others.” “Swatting” refers to when attackers attempt “to trick law enforcement into sending heavily armed strike forces – like S.W.A.T.” It has grown in popularity in recent years through false reporting, and lawmakers see this bill as a response to avoid law enforcement and the public unnecessarily being put in harm’s way.

The bill would enact stricter penalties against anyone who falsely reports a crime. Moreover, “the bill provides a response by a federal, state, district, municipal, or other public safety agency to address the reported crime, and the combined cost incurred by all responding agencies exceeds $1,000, the person making such report commits a felony of the third degree.”

The bill notes that “if great bodily harm, permanent disfigurement, or permanent disability as a proximate result of lawful conduct arising out of a response, the person making such report commits a felony of the second degree.”

If death is “a proximate result of lawful conduct arising out of a response, the person making such report commits a felony of the first degree.”

In a statement, Boyd expressed that “we can end this practice and avoid subjecting innocent people and law enforcement officers to unnecessary harm.”

Chief Jeff Pearson of the Satellite Beach Police Department and President of the Florida Police Chiefs Association, echoed in Boyd’s remarks, adding that “the practice of swatting has become more frequent, and its effects more expensive and destructive, both for the public and the law enforcement officers unwittingly put into those dangerous situations.”

Pearson also affirmed that “the Florida Police Chiefs Association fully supports this bill and Senator Boyd’s efforts to combat this emerging public safety issue.”

Related Posts

Daniel Molina

Daniel Molina

Daniel Molina is an award-winning senior reporter based in Miami. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Florida International University. His hobbies include reading, writing, and watching films.

Subscribe to the newsletter everyone in Florida is reading.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Sign up for BREAKING NEWS ALERTS

More Related Posts