Crime & Courts

Accidental ‘killing’ in Call of Duty led to fatal swatting call, gamer says

Wichita police investigate a call of a possible hostage situation near the corner of McCormick and Seneca Thursday night. A man was fatally shot by a police officer in what is believed to be a gaming prank called "swatting." (Dec. 29, 2017)
Wichita police investigate a call of a possible hostage situation near the corner of McCormick and Seneca Thursday night. A man was fatally shot by a police officer in what is believed to be a gaming prank called "swatting." (Dec. 29, 2017) The Wichita Eagle

A feud over an accidental, virtual “killing” in a Call of Duty game with a $1.50 wager led to the fatal police shooting of an innocent man, one of the people who was in the game told an interviewer on YouTube.

@LookJev told YouTuber Daniel Keem of DramaAlert that he was playing Call of Duty with his “squad” of gamers who go by M1ruhcle and baperizer. They were on the same team.

“... M1ruhcle ... killed bape and then it escalated from there from people talking and talking,” he said. “And then bape ... killed M1ruhcle, and then M1ruhcle left and started posting stuff on Twitter...”

“In the moment, they were both heated...” @LookJev said. “But then after that M1ruhcle left and was gone. He just went to Twitter.”

M1ruhcle posted baperizer’s personal address on Twitter, @LookJev said.

Then baperizer gave what he thought was M1ruhcle’s address to another man and had that man call the Wichita Police Department just after 6:15 p.m. on Dec. 28, @LookJev told Keem. The call that brought police to the address is swatting, a term for when someone calls police with a fake story of an ongoing crime in an effort to draw many police officers to an address.

Baperizer later discovered that the address he was given was a fake address or M1ruhcle’s old address, @LookJev said.

The police department received a call from someone who said he had shot someone in the head at 1033 W. McCormick. The caller said he had hostages, would not put his gun down and threatened to set fire to the house.

When police arrived at the house, a man came to the front door. That man was Andrew “Andy” Finch, 28. His family said he did not play video games and was not involved in the Call of Duty game.

Finch stepped outside and obeyed the officers’ commands to raise his hands and walk toward them, Deputy Police Chief Troy Livingston said. But after a short time, Finch lowered his hands and then suddenly raised them.

An officer across the street “feared the male pulled a weapon from his waistband, retrieved a gun and was in the process of pointing it at the officers to the east,” Livingston said. “Fearing for those officers’ safety, the officer on the north side fired one round.”

That round killed Finch.

Tyler R. Barriss has since been arrested in connection with the swatting call by the Los Angeles Police Department. He is being held without bond and could be in court as soon as Tuesday, LAPD Officer Mike Lopez told the Eagle.

“It’s M1ruhcle’s fault for giving the address,” @LookJev said. “He should have never gave the address at all just knowing that people around the world are crazy and they do things like this, but everyone’s in the wrong and it shouldn’t have escalated this far over a team killing.”

Keem and @LookJev said in the interview that baperizer is 18 years old and the son of a police officer. The identity of M1ruhcle is not known, but he is believed to be in his twenties. He has since deleted his Twitter account.

@LookJev told Keem that he has not talked to either of the players since the incident went viral. DramaAlert is a YouTube channel with more than 3.2 million subscribers and posts news videos about social interactions in online entertainment, according to the page.

“Everybody just disappeared,” he said.

Kaitlyn Alanis: 316-269-6708, @kaitlynalanis

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