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Grass Valley shooting incident a hoax, cops say

Liz Kellar
Staff Writer

A 911 call reporting that a woman had been shot in her home by a masked intruder late Monday morning appears to have been a hoax.

Grass Valley Police officers were dispatched to McNab Circle, off Hughes Road just before noon, after a juvenile reported shots fired inside a residence with the suspect fleeing, said Sgt. Clint Bates.

The caller said her mother had been shot by a man with a pistol, according to scanner traffic. The man allegedly was dressed in black and wearing a ski mask and fled on foot.

Multiple law enforcement agencies responded to the area, including a helicopter, and sealed off the area for a search.

“The address that was reported doesn’t exist,” Bates said. “We checked for that address, as well as two others.”

Bates said no victims were located and no one at any of the addresses that were checked had any information about a possible shooting.

“At this point, it looks like a swatting,” Bates said.

Swatting is reporting a fake emergency to public safety in order to get a “SWAT team” response to a location where no emergency exists. The calling party will often report they are involved or nearby as a witness to a home invasion, active shooter, or hostage situation, attempting to muster the largest response possible. Often, the law enforcement response is substantial, with police confronting the unsuspecting victims at gunpoint, only to learn that there is no real emergency.

The incident remains under investigation and hopefully will lead to an arrest, Bates said, adding, “This burned up a lot of resources — every unit in the county was dispatched.”

Contact reporter Liz Kellar at 530-477-4236 or by email at lizk@theunion.com.

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