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Last night, I posted a short blog item on the allegation from the Vincent Gray camp that someone had been adopting the Gray campaign number and mass-crank-calling residents. The crank calls amounted to silence, then hanging up.

I made the mistake of not writing that the Gray camp “claims” or “alleges” that this was the work of a nefarious crank yanker and not, say, a problem with its phone system. It was a rookie mistake. (Unfortunately, I’m not a rookie; the headline has since been changed.)

Spurred on by the comments from Downtown Rez and Co., I followed up on my piece last night with calls and e-mails to the Metropolitan Police Department, Gray’s phone service provider (Verizon), and the Gray campaign.

MPD would only say that its investigation is ongoing. They aren’t sure what caused the mass hang-ups. Verizon put me into customer service hell. The Verizon staff in Dallas—which was where the number the Gray campaign posted sent me—had no idea what I was talking about. I left a message with Verizon’s media people. I haven’t heard back.

Meanwhile, Traci Hughes, Gray’s campaign spokeswoman, says they wouldn’t have sent out the press release if they thought it was a system failure. She adds that since the release went out, the number of crank-call complaints have decreased.

Hughes says she will alert the media as soon as the investigation concludes. In the interim, I like one reader’s theory of the case:

“Seriously, they say it is a ‘Prank Call’ but no one says anything. That isn’t a crank call.

It is called a GIANT BUTT DIAL..”

File photo by Darrow Montgomery