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Nikki Haley says police had 'guns drawn' on her parents after 'swatting' incident

Nikki Haley's parents were home when she was targeted by a "swatting" hoax in December at her home on Kiawah Island, South Carolina, she said on Sunday.

Appearing on NBC's "Meet the Press," the former South Carolina governor and 2024 Republican presidential candidate said that officers had "guns drawn" and pointed at her parents, who were with a caregiver, after police were reportedly falsely directed to her residence on suspicion of a crime.

Haley and her son were not home at the time of what she called an "awful situation," which was first reported by Reuters.

Haley's husband, Michael, was also not present as he is currently deployed overseas with the South Carolina National Guard.

According to an email referencing comments from Kiawah Island Public Safety Director Craig Harris to other town officials, obtained by Reuters, the incident occurred on Dec. 30 after a man called 911 and "claimed to have shot his girlfriend and threatened to harm himself while at the residence of Nikki Haley," Harris said.

Authorities determined the threat was a hoax, and no known arrests were made.

ABC News has reached out to Harris for comment but has not yet received a response.

"It put the law enforcement officers in danger, it put my family in danger and, you know, it was not a safe situation," Haley said on Sunday, adding that the threat was not the only one made against her so far during the 2024 campaign cycle.

"That's what happens when you run for president," Haley said. "What I don't want is for my kids to live like this."

She added that she feels the incident is evidence of the "chaos surrounding our country right now."

PHOTO: Republican presidential candidate former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley speaks during a campaign event in Hollis, N.H., Jan. 18, 2024. (Matt Rourke/AP)
PHOTO: Republican presidential candidate former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley speaks during a campaign event in Hollis, N.H., Jan. 18, 2024. (Matt Rourke/AP)

Haley, who also served as the United States ambassador to the U.N. before her run for president, is one of several high-profile political figures to recently be targeted in various ways.

Last month, a New Hampshire man was arrested and indicted after allegedly sending a series of threatening text messages about three presidential candidates -- including threats to kill then-Republican candidate Vivek Ramaswamy. The other two candidates allegedly threatened were not identified by the Department of Justice.

Attorney General Merrick Garland made note of the environment last month, citing a "deeply disturbing spike" in threats to public officials.

"In just the final months of 2023, the department investigated and charged individuals with making violent threats against FBI agents, federal judges, including a Supreme Court justice, presidential candidates, members of Congress, members of the military and election workers," Garland said in remarks at a Department of Justice roundtable. "These threats are unacceptable. They threaten the fabric of our democracy."

Haley indicated on Sunday that the "swatting" incident in December "wasn't the first time."

"I think we've had it happen twice," she added, though it's unclear if she was referring to herself or another candidate.

ABC News' Abby Cruz and Alexander Mallin contributed to this report.

Nikki Haley says police had 'guns drawn' on her parents after 'swatting' incident originally appeared on abcnews.go.com