California boy to be arraigned in "swatting" prank on actor Kutcher

LOS ANGELES Thu Feb 7, 2013 10:06pm EST

Actor Ashton Kutcher sits courtside during Game 2 of the Los Angeles Lakers against Denver Nuggets NBA Western Conference quarter-final basketball playoff game in Los Angeles, California in this May 1, 2012 file photo. - Prosecutors charged a 12-year-old boy on Thursday with making a false emergency call that sent police swarming to the home of actor Ashton Kutcher in a ''swatting'' prank. REUTERS/Alex Gallardo

Actor Ashton Kutcher sits courtside during Game 2 of the Los Angeles Lakers against Denver Nuggets NBA Western Conference quarter-final basketball playoff game in Los Angeles, California in this May 1, 2012 file photo. - Prosecutors charged a 12-year-old boy on Thursday with making a false emergency call that sent police swarming to the home of actor Ashton Kutcher in a ''swatting'' prank.

Credit: Reuters/Alex Gallardo

Photo

How do I look?

Famous faces caught sneaking a peek in the mirror or applying a little makeup.  Slideshow 

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Prosecutors charged a 12-year-old boy on Thursday with making a false emergency call that sent police swarming to the home of actor Ashton Kutcher in a "swatting" prank.

The name of the boy, who was arrested by Los Angeles police in December, was withheld due to his age. He was scheduled to be arraigned in a juvenile court in Los Angeles on Friday.

The trend toward placing false emergency calls is known as "swatting" because SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) officers often are sent to the purported crime scenes. Authorities say such situations can be dangerous due to the risk of a misunderstanding between police and occupants of a building.

The boy has been charged with two felony counts each of making false bomb threats and computer intrusion in connection with the October 3 emergency call that drew police to the Hollywood Hills home of Kutcher, star of the sitcom "Two and a Half Men," and a similar call on October 10 that sent police to a Wells Fargo Bank.

Authorities have accused the boy of having reported men armed with guns and explosives in Kutcher's home and that several people had been shot. Dozens of emergency personnel were sent to the house. Kutcher was not home at the time.

Swatting calls in recent months have also sent police to the homes of singers Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus.

(Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Bill Trott)

FILED UNDER:
We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (7)
ralphos wrote:
This could get someone killed I say Juvenile hall until he is 18 should fix his wagon.

Feb 07, 2013 11:15pm EST  --  Report as abuse
dibeanie wrote:
Agree, ralphos. Potential disasters waiting to happen and for NO reason. This 12 year old needs supervision. Perhaps he’ll get it in juvenile hall.

Feb 08, 2013 12:54am EST  --  Report as abuse
becky97051 wrote:
Sometimes I read comments from other people and shake my head. A 12 year old does not need to spend 6 years in a juvenile hall for a prank. Was what he did wrong? The answer is undeniably, yes! Should he be punished for 6 years? NO. It is my hope that his punishment will include sitting in a call center and witnessing firsthand what real calls to the center involve and possibly some community service.

Feb 08, 2013 2:17am EST  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

Pictures