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Posted: 8/12/2005 10:31:21 AM EDT


Lawyer vows to prove link between video games and murder

By Tony Smith
Published Friday 12th August 2005 11:08 GMT

Outspoken attorney Jack Thompson has said he will win the civil case brought against the publisher of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and others by the families of policemen shot dead in Fayette, Alabama in 2003, allegedly by a youth obsessed with the video game.

A jury this week declared Devin Moore, 20, guilty of the murder of police officers Arnold Strickland and James Crump, and civilian police worker Leslie Mealer. Moore had pleaded not guilty by reason of mental defect.

Thompson represents the familes of the victims, who launched a civil action against GTA:VC publishser Take-Two Interactive, game retailers GameStop and Wal-mart, and PlayStation producer Sony in February this year.

After being arrested for the triple homicide, Moore was alleged to have said: "Life is a videogame. Everybody has to die some time."

Moore is known to have spent many hours playing GTA:VC, dubbed a "murder simulator" by Thompson.

"Moore rehearsed, hour after hour, the cop-killing scenarios in that hyper-violent video game," Thompson said. "The makers, distributors, and retailers of that murder simulator equipped Moore to kill as surely as if they had handed him the gun to do it.

"Blood is on the hands of men in certain corporate board rooms from Japan to New York."

In an email sent to The Register Thomspon said: "The video game defense was not used in [Moore's trial], as the defense counsel decided not to retain any expert witnesses on the issue.

"We have the experts, and we shall win our civil case on the issue."

Moore's prosecution, in part, relied on the failure of the defense to produce expert witnesses to back up their claim of diminished responsibility. "Did you hear any expert tell you anything about a video game contributing to these crimes?" Prosecutor Chris McCool asked the jury during his closing comments.

"Not a single one of the surviving family members is saying that Devin Moore is not responsible, in every sense, for what he did," said Thompson. "They would be the last ones to say that. What they are saying is that there is plenty of blame to go around, and some of it falls on Sony, Take-Two/Rockstar, Wal-Mart, and GameStop."

Miami-based Thompson has long been a vocal critic of video games that portray sex and violence. Most recently, he dubbed EA's Sim 2 game a "paedophile's paradise" because some characters take showers in the nude. While their privates are discreetly out of focus, Thompson claimed it was possible to hack the game to ensure the pixellated pudenda are clearly visible, and this it was possible to do so with child characters.

EA denied the allegation, stating the genitals are invisible, even if the blur is removed.
Link Posted: 8/12/2005 10:37:28 AM EDT
No strong link seen between violent video games and aggression

Results from the first long-term study of online videogame playing may be surprising.
Contrary to popular opinion and most previous research, the new study found that players' "robust exposure" to a highly violent online game did not cause any substantial real-world aggression.

After an average playtime of 56 hours over the course of a month with “Asheron’s Call 2,” a popular MMRPG, or “massively multi-layer online role-playing game,” researchers found “no strong effects associated with aggression caused by this violent game,” said Dmitri Williams, the lead author of the study.

Players were not statistically different from the non-playing control group in their beliefs on aggression after playing the game than they were before playing, Williams said.

Nor was game play a predictor of aggressive behaviors. Compared with the control group, the players neither increased their argumentative behaviors after game play nor were significantly more likely to argue with their friends and partners.

“I’m not saying some games don’t lead to aggression, but I am saying the data are not there yet,” Williams said. “Until we have more long-term studies, I don’t think we should make strong predictions about long-term effects, especially given this finding.” .....

Link Posted: 8/12/2005 10:40:58 AM EDT
With the amount of GTA I play, I should be the most violent serial killer in history according to this man
Link Posted: 8/12/2005 10:41:15 AM EDT

The asshole who killed someone is the guilty party, not the video game.

A few cents worth of electricity and the problem is solved

Next up.... Lawyers will be suing Larry Flint and Hugh Hefner on behalf of a client who contracted aids from sleeping around too much.

Link Posted: 8/12/2005 10:42:44 AM EDT

“I’m not saying some games don’t lead to aggression, but I am saying the data are not there yet,”

Great quote. I'm glad to see the study's author didn't let the facts get in the way of the agenda.
Link Posted: 8/12/2005 10:43:27 AM EDT
Yeah, good luck with that.
Link Posted: 8/12/2005 10:43:59 AM EDT

yeah, video game violence is the cause of much of our violence today.

that's why there was so much less in years past when children went outside and really shot real animals with BB guns.

Link Posted: 8/12/2005 10:45:19 AM EDT
while hes as it, i wonder if he can prove the link between video games and compulsive power-pellet and blinking ghost consumption.
Link Posted: 8/12/2005 10:46:09 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/12/2005 10:48:31 AM EDT by Cavu]
If it is based on science and fact, he will lose. The perps attorney already lost the criminal case based on this argument. The problem with any jury is that emotion plays into verdicts as well, and I can guarantee you that is how he "plans" to win as well as civil suits do not require the same burden of proof as criminal.

Oh yeah, I have been planning on winning the lottery too. Often times plans do not come to fruition.

Link Posted: 8/12/2005 10:46:48 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/12/2005 10:47:50 AM EDT by Hank_Rearden1]
Well.. I for one am pleased that they are transferring their ambulance chasing efforts to video game makers and away from firearm manufactures. I think most of these games suck anyway and would not want my kids playing with them. These programmers are typically foreigners and anti-gunners anyway!! Let them eat their own.
Link Posted: 8/12/2005 7:56:59 PM EDT
I have four boys. The only times they ever came to blows there was always a video game being played. They really seemed to get the riled up. No big fights, but the games definetely made them more aggressive while playing them.
Link Posted: 8/12/2005 8:05:35 PM EDT
Kids need to get outside more today. But the safety and PC morons don't want them playing competetive sports, anything they might get hurt doing(climbing trees and other "risky " behavior), using BB guns or using any "evil destructive devices" and all of the other bullshit. I've seen a piece on FOXNEWS where they removed practically all of the playground equipment because "they might get hurt on them" and the kids called the playground "boring" because it was all pretty much sand.

And you can thank lawyers for that. Lawyers like this moron. Sue because a kid got a boo-boo or hit their heads or some horseshit like that. They treat adults like this too with seat belt laws. Because we're all stupid children that must be supervised by the State because they know better than we do.
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