Special Counsel Smith reportedly targeted with attempted 'swatting' following false police response call

 January 10, 2024

A rather despicable emerging trend over the past few years is known as "swatting," in which anonymous false reports of an emergency are filed with law enforcement in hopes of eliciting a potentially dangerous or deadly police SWAT team response against a specific oppositional target.

That swatting tactic was reportedly used recently against Special Counsel Jack Smith when police were called and sent to his Maryland home on Christmas Day, according to NBC News.

Special Counsel Smith targeted

Citing two anonymous law enforcement sources, NBC News reported that Montgomery County police received a 911 call on Christmas Day that claimed that Special Counsel Smith had shot his wife in their home.

Units were immediately dispatched to the residence but were called back before they arrived after the U.S. Marshals Service detail assigned to protect Smith learned of what was happening and informed the local police that everything was fine at the home and the alleged shooting had been a false report.

The outlet noted that no reported arrests have been made in the matter. The special counsel's office declined requests for comment about the incident, as did the U.S. Marshals Service and the local police in Montgomery County.

Other targets of swatting; increased threats against state capitols and courthouses

The Hill reported on the swatting attempt against Special Counsel Smith and noted that he is not alone among high-profile political figures to be targeted with the potentially deadly tactic that directs a possibly aggressive police response against a particular unsuspecting individual.

Federal D.C. District Judge Tanya Chutkan, who is presiding over Smith's 2020 election-related criminal prosecution of former President Donald Trump, was also reportedly subjected to a swatting attempt on Sunday at her Washington D.C. home.

Some members of Congress have also been swatted in recent months, in some cases more than once, either in their home districts or their residences near the Capitol, including Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Brandon Williams (R-NY), along with Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL).

A few of the prominent Democratic targets of the tactic include progressive Boston Mayor Michelle Wu, California Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis, and Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows, who last month ruled unilaterally to remove Trump from her state's primary and general election ballots.

The Hill further reported that coinciding with the swatting attempts has been a surge of false reports of bomb threats or other emergencies at state capitols and courthouses across the nation in recent weeks that have resulted in heavy police responses and, in some cases, evacuations of the premises until an all clear is given.

The bomb threats and swatting incidents come in addition to heightened levels of otherwise typical threats of death and physical violence aimed at lawmakers and officials, all of which were recently condemned by U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland, who said such threats were "unacceptable" and "threaten the fabric of our democracy."

Increased security costs for special counsel amid increased threat levels

Meanwhile, Politico reported last week that security costs for Special Counsel Smith and his office surged during the latest reporting period which included April through September last year, and represented nearly one-third of all of the office's expenditures.

Per a Justice Department spokesperson, at least $4.4 million went toward the U.S. Marshal's security detail for the federal prosecutorial team, which is more than twice the roughly $2 million that was spent on security measures during the November 2022 through March 2023 period.

That increased spending on security seemingly matches the complaints of Smith and his team in court filings that they have faced a barrage of incessant threats of death and violence as well as somewhat less threatening harassment and intimidation efforts that are presumed to emanate from individuals who virulently oppose Smith's targeted persecution of the former president and his close allies.

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