POLICE STANDOFF: Reported Shooting A Hoax

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Des Moines police confirmed the standoff in the northwest side of the city was a hoax early Friday morning.

“We were able to speak to some neighbors and find the individual who lived at the address and spoke to him. Now, it looks like it could just be a hoax,” said Sgt. Jason Halifax, Public Information Officer for the Des Moines Police Department.

Authorities responded to a call just before 9:40 p.m. when someone called police through Relay Iowa, a telephone line used by the deaf. Dispatchers received information that a man had used an AK-47 to shoot his mother and if officers approached the home he would blow up the block.

No gun shots were heard according to police, but they surrounded a home near 54th Street and Douglas Avenue and evacuated people in homes nearby.

The Metro STAR tactical team was on the scene as police approached the “possible standoff situation seriously,” said Sgt. halifax.

Police say the hoax, known as ‘swatting’ was intended to draw a mass response. A couple of dozen police vehicles attended this incident.

A similar incident occurred in Ames in February and Clive in October.

Police are now investigating to see who sent the message.