La Marque police surround house after apparent prank call

A La Marque police officer stands outside a patrol car at the intersection of FM 519 and Clark Street in La Marque Thursday afternoon. Police surrounded a house after someone called in and reported that two people had been killed inside the house. The call turned out to be a hoax, police said. 

By STUART VILLANUEVA/The Daily News

LA MARQUE — Police surrounded a house Thursday in response to a what turned out to be a hoax call apparently targeting a software programmer embroiled in a copyright dispute involving the popular video game “Minecraft.”

An unknown caller, who dialed the La Marque Police Department through the Skype online messaging service at about 1:15 p.m., told dispatchers he had just killed his parents at a house in the 2300 block of Clark Street, police said.

The caller identified himself as a former military service member named Wesley Wolf and said he had an assault rifle and “had more people to kill,” Sgt. Shawn Spruill said.

Police surrounded the home and blocked off parts of the street. An officer used a megaphone to order anyone inside the house to come out.  

Three apparently shocked family members, an elderly man and woman and their adult son, emerged shortly before 2:30 p.m. Police searched the house and spoke to Wesley Wolf, 25, and his parents, Spruill said.

Wolf told police he is a programmer who has developed software that has created copyright issues with Internet-based businesses, Spruill said.

Wolf told officers he has been subjected to harassment and hate mail through social media because of the ongoing dispute, police said.

Several online message boards discussing the game “Minecraft,” feature posts about Wolf and a copyright infringement claim he apparently leveled against the developer.

According to the online posts, the copyright dispute led to a popular online modification, or “add-on,” to the game being taken down, apparently to the consternation of some gamers.

Wolf, who went to the La Marque police station to give astatement, could not be reached for comment. A message left at the front door of the house later in the afternoon was not returned.

Police said the hoax phone call may be an incident of “swatting,” when someone calls authorities and falsely reports a major crime to elicit a significant police response.

No SWAT teams were mobilized Thursday.

An investigation is ongoing to determine who made the false report to authorities, police said.  Police Chief Randall Aragon said authorities were required to take every precaution in case the report turned out to be true.

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(2) comments

Stevie Maradeo

This story is similar to the one about the 15-year-old getting 25 years for calling in fake swat team stand-off calls. It's these online gamers calling pranks on other people in their online game just to have the other person off of the game

J. Shaffer

The fifteen year old did receive a quarter century in prison for pulling this prank, because in that case, a person was shot and killed as a result.

Calling authorities as a prank is against the law; it's a waste of resources and dangerous.

I hope they catch the person who called.

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