Police Detective Justin Rapp killed 28-year-old Andrew Finch in 2017 on the front porch of his home in what is now known as the first fatal stabbing incident in the United States. Last week, the Wichita City Council finalized a $5 million settlement in a federal lawsuit against Rapp, according to The Wichita Eagle.
The lawsuit had been underway for five years before the City Council voted 6-1 in favor of the settlement.
“It was difficult, to say the least,” AlmaAnn Jones, spokesperson for the Finch family, told The Wichita Eagle. “I watched this family go through disappointment after disappointment after disappointment and finally we came together as a community today. We got this done.”
Police were called to Finch’s home after California man Tyler Barriss made a false report to the police claiming that a person in the home had killed someone and was holding others hostage. Barriss made the call in one Duty: WWII match, and was recruited by one of the Call of Duty players in that match, Casey Viner. Viner gave Barriss the address, believed to be the home of the other Call of Duty player, Shane Gaskill. Finch knew none of the men and was unaware of the swatting call to the police. Viner was sentenced to 15 months in prison. Barriss will serve 20 years in prison.
Rapp was not charged with killing Finch, despite the fact that Finch was unarmed and did not threaten any police officers at the scene. The Wichita Police Department did not investigate Rapp for policy violations, and he was later promoted to detective, according to The Wichita Eagle.
Wichita will cover $2 million of the settlement itself, with insurance taking care of the rest.
The murder brought national light to the ugly practice of whacking, an unfortunate and dangerous “prank” with a history in gaming culture. It’s used as a way to harass others, and it’s becoming more and more common for people to swat Twitch streamers. In 2021 a notorious one Rainbow Six Siege cheater made a bogus report to the city office of swat developer Ubisoft Montreal.