Northwest University shooting hoax may have originated in Rockford area

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The call made to police that resulted in a SWAT team response may have come from a phone in the Rockford area.

Officers arriving on campus scrambled to find the supposed shooter, but after an intense search they found no evidence of a suspect or a crime scene.

Instead, investigators believe the hoax to be a “Swatting” incident.

Swatting is known as a practice of making a prank call to an emergency service in an attempt to bring a large number of armed police officers to a particular address. The 

“The indication is the phone call came from outside the Chicagoland area,” Commander Ryan Glew of the Evanston Police Department said on Thursday. “This is not a reliable location, but it was somewhere southeast of Rockford, Illinois.”

Police did not specify if they were able to trace a number to a particular person or a cell phone tower.

The Illinois State’s Attorney’s office says incidents like this are a felony offense. Callers can face up to three years in jail. 

The incident is under investigation.

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