The lawyer for a 25-year-old New Zealand man who pleaded guilty to beating a police officer and stealing a patrol car has blamed his client's crime in part on playing Grand Theft Auto - and the judge apparently agreed.
As reported by the Dominion Post, attorney Cris Nicholls argued at the sentencing hearing for Tim Reid that his client's behavior was influenced by the game.
From the news account:
[Reid] committed violent offences and compulsively played Grand Theft Auto. Mr Nicholls said a video game that showed violence toward police was a public safety concern, with the game promoting the behaviour...
Wellington District Court judge Denys Barry jailed Reid for five years... He said Reid was hardwired for violence and anti-social behaviour and programmed by his recreational pursuits.
GP: Reid, according to the report, began smoking pot at age five. He had been physically and sexually abused while growing up, and continues to abuse drugs and alcohol. He has priors for assault and robbery. Moreover, he is a 25-year-old man, not an impressionable adolescent.
Yet a video game is to blame?