MPD: False Report of Shooter Near Stanton Park Friday

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MPD speaks to reporters after false 911 call on the 200 block of A Street NE. Screenshot: @dcpolicedept/witter.

Just before 11 a.m. Friday morning Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) and the U.S. Capitol Police (USCP) officers responded to an apparently false report of a shooter on the 200 block of A Street NE.

Officers responded, closing the area and creating a command center nearby out of what was described as “an abundance of caution”.

During a press conference Friday afternoon, MPD Assistant Chief of Homeland Security Jeffery Carroll said that there was a 911 call made “to elicit a police response” to a residence with commercial connections on the 200 block of A Street NE. The response included both MPD and USCP as the property is located close to the Supreme Court and Capitol Buildings, Carroll said.

Carroll said members of MPD and the USCP entered a residence on A Street NE to verify that everyone was safe, adding that the people inside the home were more than happy to cooperate.

NBC News Reporter Frank Thorp tweeted that police were observed speaking with former Trump Administration Advisor Steve Bannon, who owns a townhouse on the block.

The incident appears to be an act of “swatting”, or lying to bring emergency or police services upon an individual or location. Knowingly placing a false emergency call is a criminal offense in DC, punishable by a fine and or jail time.

Brian Knappenberger’s six-part Netflix docu-series Web of Make Believe: Death, Lies, and the Internet explores this type of crime. Police said there would be an investigation into the placement of the false 911 call.

As of 12:30 p.m., all impacted road and sidewalk closures around the area have reopened. MPD emphasized that there is no indication of any threat to public safety at this time.

Sarah Payne is a general assignment reporter for Capital Community News. She can be reached at [email protected]

With additional reporting from Elizabeth O’Gorek.