A recent study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology revealed “aggressive video games in which there was a lot of violence triggered anti-social behavior in teenagers. It also increased the risk of committing criminal acts and leads to addictive and dangerous habits in the gamer such as drinking and smoking.”
[Insert collective “duh” here.]
In other words, it’s no surprise that violence breeds violence… and there’s a whole lotta violence in games like “Grand Theft Auto” and “Manhunt.”
That said, here are a few of the most jaw-dropping, game-related crime headlines we’ve come across in recent years. If these don’t inspire you to drop the controller and go take a walk, then maybe you should head over to Video-Game-Addiction.org.
It works if you work it.
GAME OVER: Cody Wygant was arrested this past April for murdering his own son after he admitted to suffocating the 16-month-old because his cries disrupted his X-Box gaming session online. Wygant told police he took his son Daymeon out of his playpen and put his hands over his nose and mouth for at least three minutes until the tot stopped crying. THEN he covered the boy with layers of bedding. Five hours later—after Wygant played more X-Box and then watched three episodes of the TV show “Fringe”—when the 24-year-old dad went to check on his son, Daymeon was unresponsive. Wygant was charged with third-degree murder.
GAME OVER: A gaming-obsessed couple in Anaheim, California, pleaded guilty to child abuse, false imprisonment and delinquency charges after officers discovered two young girls living in squalor while Lester Louis Huffmire and wife Petra played “WoW” nonstop. The girls, ages 5 and 10, spent three years living in inhumane conditions, which included “kitchen appliances ‘covered in mold and cobwebs,’ stacks of trash, debris, mold, and feces throughout the home, a pile of used condoms under a stuffed teddy bear, and inoperable toilets.” Lester was sentenced to five years in prison while Petra was sentenced to three years and four months.
3.) THE CRIME: After Video Game-Related Argument, Younger Brother Goes After Older Bro With A Double-Bladed Axe
GAME OVER: What started as a harmless argument about equal gaming time turned into a medieval battle after 19-year-old Luke Marshall went after his 21-year-old brother with a double-bladed axe. Luke allegedly struck his brother in the foot and wrist, incurring minor injuries. Ultimately, the Nebraska-bred swordsman was charged with second-degree assault, use of a weapon to commit a felony, and making terroristic threats.
4.) THE CRIME: Baby Girl Starves To Death While Parents Raise Virtual Child In Online Game
GAME OVER: Anyone doubting the validity of online gaming addiction needs to see the HBO Documentary, “Love Child”, which follows the real-life story of a South Korean couple who let their 3-month-old daughter starve while they played the popular role-playing game, “Prius Online”, at a neighborhood computer cafe. According to local police, “The couple seemed to have lost their will to live a normal life because they didn’t have jobs and gave birth to a premature baby. They indulged themselves in the online game of raising a virtual character so as to escape from reality, which led to the death of their real baby.” The parents were found guilty of involuntary manslaughter and, believe it or not, were given a reduced sentence due to their addiction.
5.) THE CRIME: Two Men Charged With Disorderly Conduct After Trying To Replicate Gun Scene From “Grand Theft Auto”
GAME OVER: If you were on the street and saw one man point a gun at the head of another, you’d probably freak out and call the police, right? That’s exactly what happened in Landsdale, Pennsylvania, on August 20, when a frightened witness called 911 after seeing a man attempt to carjack a silver SUV. The good news is that the crime wasn’t real; the two individuals involved were using an Airsoft pellet gun to make a “Grand Theft Auto“-esque video. The bad news is that the incident was taken seriously and the suspects were charged with
stupidity disorderly conduct.
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