Local authorities are investigating a case Friday night in Marshall after a prank hostage call was made.

According to the Department's Facebook page, the Marshall Police initially responded to the 100 block of West Michigan Avenue around 6 p.m. on February 26th on a report of a hostage situation with a threat of violence. Once they arrived, they found that the call was a prank, also known as "swatting".

Calhoun County Sheriff's deputies and Michigan State Police troopers from the Marshall post also responded to the area and no one was found to be in danger.

These "swatting" calls have become a more common type of call that can cause panic and sometimes injury, even death, with multiple resources used to assist during the event. It was a crime that originally started in 2009 and has spread across the country since, according to an 2019 article on Inside Hook. These types of prank calls can be either sent in to law enforcement by phone, texts, email and sometimes through group chats, and are not tolerated.

These types of crimes can be punishable to a minimum of 93 days in jail, up to 15 years and/or fines depending on victims that are involved, according to Michigan law.

Authorities are continuing to look for more information on this case. Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact the Marshal Police Department at (269) 781-2596 or Silent Observer at (269) 781-9700.

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