Attleboro police cruiser

ATTLEBORO — Police responded to a call about a shooting at a house on Robert Street Thursday night but quickly determined it was a “swatting” hoax similar to one a year ago.

Officers responded to a 911 call to the house about 6:30 p.m. and found the resident safe and no signs of a shooting.

Police Chief Kyle Heagney said Friday that the dispatcher recognized the address from a previous swatting incident at the apartment, located in a triple-decker near the corner of Summer Street.

Swatting is a term used to describe a hoax call intended to bring about a large police response. It derives from the law enforcement unit “SWAT” (special weapons and tactics).

Callers often use various technologies to mask their actual telephone number and Heagney said it is extremely difficult to track them.

The Robert Street resident told police he does not know who could be responsible for the call, Heagney said.

“We have to treat each call as the actual scenario,” he said.

David Linton may be reached at 508-236-0338.

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