It’s been close to two weeks since 16-year-old Kyle “Bugha” Giersdorf won $3 million and the title of best solo Fortnite player at the World Cup Finals in July. The spotlight appears to have gained him plenty of attention — he was a guest on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon — but not all of it positive. Giersdorf said he was a victim of “swatting” over the weekend.
On Saturday, while streaming on Twitch, Geirsdorf had his match interrupted by his father telling him police were at his home. A clip of the stream shows the moment when the incident happened.
“I got swatted,” Giersdorf said in the clip. His keyboard camera shows that he got up as his teammates were wondering if he left during the match.
In a second video, Geirsdorf retells what happens and explains why he was lucky.
“This one officer … he lives in our neighborhood,” he said. “Dude, they come in with guns, bro. That’s scary.”
“Swatting” is a form of harassment whereby someone calls the local police of the intended target and informs police of a fake crime at the target’s address. In most cases, the harasser will say the target is armed and will harm other individuals within the house. The goal of “swatting” is to have police charge into the home and subdue the victim. Twitch streamers are often targeted by harassers since the incident can occur during a livestream.
In 2017, a man “swatted” another individual over a Call of Duty argument that left one person dead. The man was sentenced to a minimum of 20 years.
Giersdorf and the Upper Potsgrove Police Department didn’t immediately reply to a request for comment.