Kansas woman sentenced to probation related to 'swatting'

Published: Apr. 5, 2018 at 5:31 PM CDT
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A Kansas woman convicted in connection with a "swatting" event has been sentenced to probation.

The Hutchinson News on Friday reported that Reno County District Judge Joe McCarville gave Hutchinson woman Tatumn Marie Watkins one year of probation. The 20 year old pleaded guilty last month to attempting to "give a false alarm of violent activity or a threat to life."

Watkins and another woman allegedly called police in April to report that a man battered two family members and was outside their home with a gun "waiting for police."

Police ordered the man outside at gunpoint, but no one was hurt.

The event came several months after police fatally shot a Wichita man during a deadly hoax emergency call.

Original Story: Thursday, April 6, 2018

Hutchinson police arrested two women in a case of "swatting" Wednesday night. A false report claimed a man was waiting for officers, armed with a gun outside a home.

The Reno County Sheriff's Office says it started when Hutchinson police responded to two separate complaints of child custody issues reported by Chassity N. Nicholson, 22, of Hutchinson.

The sheriff's office gave the following account of the complaints:

"These reports were that the father of her 3 month old child had taken the child from her and was refusing to return the child. Investigation revealed that the father was lawfully in possession of the child and the child was safe and secure. Ms. Nicholson was informed that we were unable to lawfully remove the child from the father to give him to her and that she would have to resolve the issue through the courts."

A little after midnight Thursday, the sheriff's office says Nicholson and an acquaintance, Tatum M. Watkins, 20, of Hutchinson made another call to 911. During this call, the sheriff's office says the women reported the father of the 3-month-old "had battered his sister and was distraught." The women also reported the man stated he wouldn't go back to jail and was outside the home with a gun, waiting for police to arrive.

"Based on this information several officers from (the Hutchinson Police Department) as well as deputies from the Reno County Sheriff’s Office responded to the residence in the 1200 block of East 7th. A perimeter was established and contact was made by phone with the father of the child," the Reno County Sheriff's Office says. "He willingly exited while holding the child and was detained and interviewed."

Officers then spoke with Nicholson who admitted that she and Watkins made up the story about the man they reported in their calls to 911.

Nicholson and Watkins were arrested and booked into the Reno County Jail for felony misuse of 911, the sheriff's office says.

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