Originally Published 01/23/2014
If a 13 year old girl is going to make a crank call, she probably shouldn't randomly dial my office number. A number of years ago I arrived at work and the company operator was almost in tears. She described a voice mail message that had been left in her voice mail, and went on to explain how upsetting it was to her. I couldn't understand how a voice mail -- any voice mail -- could be that upsetting so I took a listen.
The voice mail was disgusting. It went beyond what you would consider a prank call, was littered with vulgarity, and threatened bodily harm in very explicit terms. I made a few crank calls when I was a kid of the "is your refrigerator running" variety, but this message was different. I was stunned. The operator asked me what kind of a person would leave that kind of voice mail, and I told her we should find out. So I pulled call records for that night from our Call Accounting Software and there was an incoming call with Caller ID that matched the date and time of the voice mail.
Because of the graphic nature of the phone call we decided to phone the police and file a report. They sent an officer over and he too was disturbed by the phone call. He apologized and said that this was one of the worse calls he had ever heard, but that there was no way he could track down who had done it. I smiled and handed him the Call Detail Report with the caller id, and showed him how the date and time matched up to the voice mail message. The officer burst out laughing.
He said that this changed everything and that he would call me back. The call we had received was from a local number in our same city. The office must have driven right over there because I received a telephone call from him about 2 hours later. He was chuckling and said he just had a very interesting visit at the home that the call was made from. He told me that he knocked on the door and the father of the home answered. The officer explained why he was there and the guy apparently went pale and started shaking. The previous day was his 13 year old daughter's birthday and they had given her a telephone for her room, and she had a sleep-over that night with a couple of her friends. The girl admitted to making a bunch of similar calls and the Dad was not pleased.
The officer thanked me for calling him, and said that we didn't need to press charges. He was sure that the Dad was going to take care of the problem.
Bob Edwards is the Founder and CEO of Comm One LLC which develops and sells Call Accounting Software for tracking telephone calls for business. You can contact Bob directly at 801-523-9797 or firstname.lastname@example.org