Coast Guard: Suspect makes 11 false distress calls

BALTIMORE, Md. (WUSA9) -- The Coast Guard is searching for a hoax caller who has made 11 false distress calls in June and July, all from the Seneca Creek area, according to the Coast Guard Investigative Service.

According to the Baltimore Coast Guard, one of the calls happened on June 21 and the rest have happened throughout the month of July. The Coast Guard has determined that it is the same male voice making the calls.

The total cost for the searches is estimated at $15,000, according to the Coast Guard.

"Making false distress calls limits the Coast Guard and our rescue partners' capabilities to assist those boaters who are in actual emergency situations," said Capt. Kevin Kiefer, commander of Coast Guard Sector Baltimore. "Hoax radio calls also place first responders in unneccesary danger as they work to assist the boating public."

The Coast Guard said making a false distress call is considered to be a felony. The suspect can get up to six years in prison, a $5,000 civil fine, a $25,000 criminal fine and reimbursement to the Coast Guard.

A $2,000 reward is being offered in this case.

Anyone with information that can help identify the caller is asked to contact Coast Guard Investigative Service Baltimore at 410-576-2696.


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