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back to article SWAT team besieges Illinois school in 'butt dialling' incident

An Illinois man prompted a full-scale SWAT intervention on Monday afternoon by inadvertently "butt-dialling" his wife, who quickly became convinced the "garbled" call was evidence he was being held hostage. The unnamed chap was driving home from his job at Carleton Washburne School in Winnetka when "his touch screen phone …

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Silver badge

Idiot woman. Stupider police.

No doubt they were all hoping it was "teh terrorists" ...

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Bronze badge
Coat

Repeat after me...

the terrorists have won,

the terrorists have won,

the terrorists have won,

...

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FAIL

Sorry WHAT!!!

"Armed operatives nonetheless searched the school for two hours as a precaution"

Why, just WHY FFS.

Haven't they got anything better to do?

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WTF?

Armed operatives nonetheless searched the school for two hours as a precaution

nothing like a bit of <s>snooping</s> <s>time wasting</s> er training.. whatever.

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Bronze badge

Possibly because...

It might look a little bad if someone dialled the emergency services having been kidnapped, but couldn't talk on the phone because they didn't want to be shot. Imagine; a police armed response team turned up and the kidnapper/terrorist told them "sorry mate, sat on my phone. i've ended the call now" and the police just said "ok" and buggered off.

That'd play well in whatever tabloid newspapers the locals read if someone died afterwards. You can just see the outcry, incompetent police bla bla bla.

I'd complain about people not locking phones, but short of turning a phone off it's impossible to prevent dialling 999/911/112

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Overtime

They got dragged into work on their day off, they are damned well going to get something out of it.

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This is NOT a title

>Haven't they got anything better to do?

That depends who you ask :)

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Coat

I guess not.

No Brazilian electricians around?

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Grenade

After putting on all that kit and getting all pumped up

they couldn't just leave it there in case some 'long haired hippy types' were smoking massive drugs or sommat.

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Hindsight is always 20/20

It is very easy to say now that the search was pointless now as we know exactly what happened.

However they (the SWAT team) had to be sure that the people holding him (the teacher) hostage hadn't foud out that he had managed to raise the alarm. Sent him home and told him to tell his wife it was all a misunderstanding so she would call off the SWAT team and they (the 'terrorists') could escape from their failed attempt without being caught.

Ideally the woman wouldn't have called the SWAT team in the first place and all this could have been avoided.

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Anonymous Coward

But why the school?

The call came from his car, apparently. So obviously the police should have searched the premises of the nearest doughnut vendor for two hours, just in case the "kidnappers" might have brought him there.

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Bronze badge

Why

> "Armed operatives nonetheless searched the school for two hours as a precaution"

> Why, just WHY FFS.

It is just common sense for any false alarm like that to be converted into a training excercise, otherwise it is just a waste of time and money.

And it would also be a sensible precaution, in case a perp managed to pass it off as a false alarm.

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Flame

@__PB__: Nicely farfetched story

But there being no indication whatsoever that the school was involved as a location, spending 2hrs combing through it makes as much sense as combing through any other building.

2hrs X 30 (at very least, backups/comms/... etc) = expensive.

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Bronze badge

hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut

hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut

(don't tell me I'm the only one who when reading the article pictured that scene near the end of The Blues Brothers?)

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Silver badge
Megaphone

Exactly...

hut hut hut hut hut hut hut hut .....

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Thumb Up

Better safe..

...than sorry.

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Anonymous Coward

"He had the radio up and was listening"

Up where exactly?

Oh, "butt-dialling".

On second thoughts, don't answer.

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is this a title?

to late

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Big Brother

America.....

I love america but seriously.....someone needs to take a chillpill...I mean you can just see al quaeda and their cronies somewhere having a great laugh at how crazy things have become, sure there is no need to do anything again to america...civil liberties will never be restored there!

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Unhappy

@"someone needs to take a chillpill"

Its the hidden part of the American way of life and has been for hundreds of years. Here's a South Park's explanation.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NPBHtjZmSpw (I assume that version of the cartoon has the correct audio as well, as I don't have sound at work).

Over 3 million Americans suffer seriously from panic attacks. Its a country with over 250 million guns. Just imagine someone shaking in fear behind their gun, as they hold their gun up pointed at what they fear and you have an image which explains American history.

For all the American bravado, its really dominated by fear just under the surface, which can easily surface far too often. Its not a way I would want to live, so I will never live out there. I certainly wouldn't want to bring up a family in that kind of fear driven environment. :(

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Silver badge

But of course, Mr Bond

A frightened population is much easier to control (Goebbels/Goerring - never can remember which)

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Original and translation

o: "Over 3 million Americans suffer seriously from panic attacks."

t. About 1% of the US population suffers from panic attacks.

o: "Its a country with over 250 million guns."

t: Within the country as a whole there is something less than 1 firearm per capita.

o: "Just imagine someone shaking in fear behind their gun, as they hold their gun up pointed at what they fear and you have an image which explains American history"

t: I, MinionZero, imagine Americans as frightened, flaky, gunslingers.

o: "Its not a way I would want to live, so I will never live out there."

t: I, MinionZero, have learned all I need to know about the USA from South Park.

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the cartoon in Bowling for Columbine has nothing to do with South Park

It was not drawn or voiced by Matt Stone or Trey Parker.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0310793/trivia

"Contrary to popular belief, "South Park" (1997) creator Trey Parker and co-creator Matt Stone had nothing to do with the animated section of this film. Stone was enraged, believing that the impression that they had done the animated section was intentional. For that reason, Michael Moore was portrayed in an amusing negative fashion in Parker and Stone's film Team America: World Police (2004). "

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FAIL

RE: Repeat after me...

Couldn't have put it better myself.

I dont understand it. Terrorists blow some shit up on the other side of the world, and the world news makes it their top story.

Exactly what the terrorists want... as much publicity as they can get.

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AMERICA

FUCK YEAH!

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Thumb Up

titular something

Here they come to save the motherfucking day, yeah!

/me places face in hands, and shakes head whilst sighing

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Paris Hilton

junk in the trunk

I wonder what kind of touchscreen it was for his butt to be able to dial through clothing? Unless he was commando.....

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No need to go commando...

...if you've got a resistive touch screen, as fitted to almost every Windows Mobile touchscreen phone out there today, plus a whole bunch of other touch-enabled phones that were around before the fruity mob brainwashed everyone into thinking smartphones/touchscreens began with the iPhone.

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Silver badge

Could he have had one of those old things called

buttons? Easy to press them.

Or voice activated speed dial.

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Silver badge

Voice activated?

By his butt?

Perhaps he sounds like a fart when talking?

*parp* .... Dialling Home

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Jos
Joke

No iPhone...

After reading through the article I never thought it could have been an iPhone. If it was close to his butt, the signal would probably have crapped out...

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WTF?

A question in my mind

Who exactly, was the biggest arse in all this? His wife? or the Swat team?

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Anonymous Coward

Problem for Aaron's and Abigail's

My wife is called Abigail and hence tends to end up as the first entry in the contact list for people she knows ... so as a result when they sit on their phones etc its normally us who get autodialled - used to regularily get calls (seemingly normally from pubs given background noises) from a builder we'd been using and last week got woken up at 2am by an accidental text message from her sister who was on holiday in Australia!

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Anonymous Coward

Heh, its' all for the lolz.

People should have the first entry in their contacts list as aaaaaaa with some junk number like 3429438429238 sorted.

Having said that, I used to have a blackberry that had a rather prominent button on the front. If it was pressed like three times (when locked) it dialed 999 and you couldn't disable it. Which idiot thought of that I don't know.

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Boffin

simple solution

the first entry in my contact list is "Aaaaaaaaaaa" and the number is that of my own phone, so it is always engaged if there is an accidental dial

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FAIL

I dont understand

I just dont have a phone with those stupid 'shortcuts' to call people.

On the N900, assuming no desktop shortcuts, it takes 5 touches to call a arbitrary number. 2-3 touches if you've been talking to someone in your address book recently.

The chances of accidentally doing that is nil. And it isnt a inconvenience at all not having a shortcut.

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FAIL

Did nobody at any time think to break off the call

and call him back to see if he was okay?

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Mobile phone to landline, only the mobile can end the call

When on a call that is mobile phone to landline, only the mobile phone can end the call.

I have had accidental calls before to the home number and no matter how many times I hang up my phone, it doesn't matter, as soon as I pick it up again the call is still there.

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Silver badge
Pint

This is not what's being observed here

GSM to PSTN doesn't exhibit this problem.

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Coat

Does my bum look big in this?

Does my bum look big in this?

... "this" being America.

Mine's the coat styled to cover a lardie-arse.

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Silver badge

HUT HUT HUT

So... the hut-hut team carried on searching NINETY MINUTES after he got home and wifey apologised.... ????

'Sorry ma'am, a two-hour search and democracy check is standard procedure in non-cases like these'

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Jobs Horns

Is this what they call an Arse (S)Wipe ....

motion on a touch screen?

More importantly, Jobs hasn't patented it (yet).

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Wrong shade of brown

After the quick mention of the husband listening to hip hop, it occurred to me, that some people in the comments section are overlooking the obvious, it's the U.S., and our citizens in the mid-west tend to fear a group of people a little closer to home (but hopefully not too close) before they even think of terrorists.

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Flame

You're not clever

Why the comments about terrorists??

SWAT = *POLICE* = completely domestic

Feds = dhs/tsa/cia/dod = teh terrorists

Granted, the police (via bomb squads) can be called in all too frequently for suspicious packages/vehicles. But what is the proposed 'terrorist-free world' response for this incident? Do the cops reply "Kidnapped you say? Well call us back if he's still missing tomorrow, just so we can be sure." As others have pointed out, you don't get a case number when you call 911 - there is not going back to update your case notes to 'false alarm'.

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Bronze badge
Happy

There were "ASSUMPTIONS" here...

"Talk" about an "ASS" and making "ASSUMPTIONS"... his "ASS" made an "ASS" of the parties endvolved in the ASSUMED hostage-taking...

(Know what happens when you ASSUME It makes an ASS out of U and ME... )

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FAIL

What's That?

Muffled voices? Rap music? Must be a hostage situation!!!

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FAIL

Alert Fail

Wish someone would have alerted me of this. I would have done an interview or obstructed the search or something. 8.6 miles away from where I am writing this comment.

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Terminator

Paranoia Americas greatest threat

The downfall of the US and its ilk will not be from terrorism either internal nor external, it will be down to paranoia. The fact that people have commented defending the SWAT teams response says it all...IT WAS A COMPLETE OVER-REACTION FOLKS!!! There are no excuses for their response.

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