Helena man arrested on suspicion of ‘swatting’ incident in Gallatin County, officials say


A Helena man has been arrested for allegedly placing a false report with law enforcement, stating that gunshots had occurred inside a home near Belgrade when no such incident occurred, the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday, noting it was another occurrence of what is commonly known as “swatting.”

Ray Saldana Flores was arrested Jan. 27 on suspicion of making false reports to peace officers, a felony, sheriff’s officials said in a Facebook post. He has pleaded not guilty and is out on bond, authorities said.

Attempts to reach Flores on Thursday were unsuccessful.

Swatting involves an anonymous caller falsely reporting active killing or imminent killing of others, sheriff’s authorities said.

“This call prompts law enforcement to respond in anticipation of encountering an act of active violence creating tense, confusing and dangerous situations with unwitting citizens and law enforcement,” the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office said.

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Officials said the Gallatin County 911 Dispatch Center on Jan. 26 received a non-emergency call of gunshots inside a residence southwest of Belgrade during an altercation. Deputies made contact with three occupants who quickly confirmed it was a false report.

Through investigation the male

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