View Full Version : Dad Recording Football Game Mistaken For Sniper

10-18-2006, 11:29 AM
Shouldn't the original officer have investigated (i.e. confront the man) before jumping to conclusions and having SWAT called?


SWAT Team Called In For Man On Roof

POSTED: 7:43 am EDT October 18, 2006

MIDVALE, Utah -- A parent attempting to record a middle school football game from the school's roof was misidentified as a sniper, causing police to evacuate hundreds of people from the field.

James Kranz wanted to shoot video of his children playing on Saturday. But an officer spotted him climbing a ladder onto the school's roof with what looked like a rifle, said police Sgt. Gregg Olsen.

"An officer saw a man on top of the roof, walking around, pacing back and forth," Olsen said. "He was acting extremely suspicious."

It turned out to be a lawn chair that Kranz had with him -- not a gun.

A SWAT team was called in after Kranz was spotted on the roof.

Parent Andres Dominguez reported hearing someone screaming, "Shooting! Shooting!" when officials ordered the field cleared. He was skeptical, but followed fans off the field.

Another spectator spotted SWAT team members scanning the rooftop with rifles and figured it wasn't a false alarm.

"When I saw the police looking through their scopes, following this guy across the roof, I thought it was for real," Ron Watkins said.

Kranz jumped down from the roof and ran when officers tried to get him to drop to his knees and show his hands, Olsen said. Kranz told police he didn't respond because he didn't believe they were really officers.

Authorities ticketed Kranz for trespassing, then ordered him off the school grounds.

10-18-2006, 11:35 AM
Seems like an overreaction on the face of it, but considering all of the violence that has gone down at schools recently, it's hard to blame them. What was the guy doing climbing on the roof anyway?

10-18-2006, 01:54 PM
Mistook a lawn chair for a gun. That's a new one.

Red Leader
10-18-2006, 01:59 PM
Mistook a lawn chair for a gun. That's a new one.

The more I thought about it, the more I could see it. I take our folding lawn chairs to my sons football games and when they are in the bag, I could see how they could be mistaken for a rocket launcher or some other type of missile launcher, especially if he had the strap around his shoulder.



10-18-2006, 02:03 PM
I guess I was thinking the more conventional aluminum folding lawn chair.

But thanks to these visuals, new age sports chair = bazooka!

10-18-2006, 02:35 PM
This is why I stopped videotaping police academy graduations.