Kentucky lawmaker wants 'swatting' to be a felony crime following March incident in Georgetown

WLEX swatting
Posted at 10:38 AM, Apr 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-24 11:36:36-04

GEORGETOWN, Ky. (LEX 18) — A Georgetown couple victimized by a March "swatting" incident told us they both felt "assaulted" the night Scott County sheriff's deputies stormed their home in what turned out to be a false report of a homicide. LEX 18 obtained the dramatic security video of when the victims were ordered out of the home with their hands in the air.

MORE: Law enforcement on growing push to make "swatting" a felony in Kentucky

The husband and wife spoke out because they believe "swatting" should be a felony offense due to the anxiety, fear, and stress it caused them. Currently, there is no law on "swatting" in Kentucky. Scott County Sheriff Tony Hampton says right now the crime would be considered as falsely reporting an incident, which is a misdemeanor.

The victims' story caught the attention of State Representative Phillip Pratt of the 62nd district.

"You could just hear it in their voices and as they walked out, they were scared to death," said Pratt who viewed the security video and listened to the couples' interview in our story.

"I'll be honest after watching that video I already contacted my staff, and we are reaching out to the judiciary committee. I want to draft a bill that makes 'swatting' a felony here in Kentucky because it could have turned out much worse," said Pratt Thursday.

Pratt plans to introduce a bill the first chance he gets, at the 2022 session of the General Assembly. "I see this being a very good bipartisan bill that I can't imagine anyone not voting for," said Pratt.

"This shook those people to the core and it's something we need to take very seriously, and we need to put some bite into the law to stop people from doing this."

This story was originally published by LEX 18.