Kearney hoax caller used out-of-state web-based voice call

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KEARNEY, Neb. (KSNB) - Kearney Police Monday said they are working with a web-hosting service to determine who made a call falsely claiming that a woman had been shot.

A Kearney police cruiser blocked off a street in south Kearney Sunday afternoon, while police checked what turned out to be a false report about a shooting. (Source: Kearney Police)

Kearney police went to a residence at 4th and Railroad Sunday afternoon after a caller told dispatchers that he had shot his wife and intended to shoot any police who responded.

After deploying almost 30 officers including a SWAT team to the location, authorities determined that the apartment referred to in the call was empty and that no-one had been injured or killed.

In a press release, Kearney police also said the caller made additional phone calls indicating that he could see police near the home. The caller reported details about the police deployment which indicated he was observing the officers.

Officers contacted the landlord of the involved property and learned the apartment in question was vacant. Members of the Emergency Services Team deployed a remote control device inside the residence and determined the apartment was unoccupied, confirmed by a secondary check.

At this time, Kearney Police are investigating this case as a false report, designed to draw a large police response. The telephone number used by the subject in this case was an out of state number, placed through a web based voice call. Investigators are working with the web host to determine the origin of the call.

The press release went on to state, "The seriousness of this situation cannot be understated. Nearly 30 members of law enforcement spent two hours on this potentially dangerous situation making them unavailable to respond to real emergencies. At this time there have been no arrests made in relation to this case. The subject in this case, when located may face False Reporting Charges, a Class I Misdemeanor."

Sunday night Kearney police chief Bryan Waugh wrote this in a tweet on social media, "...we will put the same effort into locating the person(s) responsible."