Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media Spotlight

December 15, 2008 -

The sorry tale of a 16-year-old who shot his parents and then tried to frame his dad for the crime is currently playing out in an Ohio court room.

Rather undeservedly, Halo 3 seems to be playing a central role in the case. Ironically, the youthful accused killer never got  a chance to actually play the game.

As the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports, testimony at the trial of Daniel Petric indicates that the boy shot his parents and tried to make it look like a murder-suicide after he was blocked from playing Halo 3 by his father. The elder Petric had confiscated the game from his son as the teen brought it into the house. Mr. Petric then locked it in a box - right next to his 9mm pistol. His son somehow got into the box and recoved the game - and the gun.

From the newspaper's coverage of testimony:

Mark Petric... testified that before the shooting... [Daniel] came into the room with a question:

"Would you guys close your eyes... I have a surprise for you."

Mark Petric said he expected a pleasant surprise. The next thing he knew... He had been shot in the head...

He said the next thing he remembers is his son shoving the gun in his hand and saying, "Hey Dad, here's your gun. Take it."

In his defense Daniel's lawyers argued that the boy was under an emotional strain at the time of the shootings because an illness had kept him housebound for a year. During that time, his lawyers argued, he had little to do but watch TV and play video games.

Could there be additional video game testimony coming up?


Comments

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

Wow... I would have shot the kid back right then and there if I were the father and had any ability to. Then again if I was the father I would have more sense than to put the game in a box that has a gun that my kid could get into. I would also not be outraged that Halo was brought into my household.

Piece of shit kid deserves prison. Hope he likes ass rape!

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

I was watching the news today and it ends up yes, the media is blaming video games for this.  They basically said all violent video games caused this and for parents to not give their kids violent games.  They tried to make video games look like garbage so I wrote a letter to the newstation, wkyc.com, about this.  I am currently waiting for a reply but this is what I wrote: 

Dear WKYC,

                I am writing on behalf of the boy who shot his parents due to them taking away Halo.  I am a 16 year old game playing Junior.  I also develop games in my free time.  Gaming is a passion to me and I believe gaming is a great way to relax as well as go into virtual world.  Seeing your station focus on the violence of games and saying it was the main agitator in this boys shooting I find extremely wrong.  While I was watching this, the media was focusing on the fact that this boy shot his parents most likely due to the violence depicted in Halo 3.  While Halo 3 is a game that involves shooting, it does not depict realistic violence.  It is set in a fantasy world using fantasy weapons.  I do agree with your news story that games can build aggression and also can be addicting, though I would like to make the argument that any form of media can be addicting.  Also, the case you are trying to make is playing a video game in which you shoot people affects a person more in building aggression that playing Paintball or Airsoft does where you are shooting people in a non-fantasy setting, in which I find hard to believe.  In addition, I would also like to point out that 99% of all High School boys play video games as proven here: http://www.ajc.com/living/content/shared/news/stories/2008/09/GAMING_POLL17_AUS.html?cxntlid=inform_artr .  The article also goes onto say that 94% of teenage girls do.  96% of those teens say they play games regularly.  I also want to bring up the sales of Halo 3.  http://www.gamespot.com/xbox360/action/halo3/news.html?sid=6181307 .  This article states that it sold 3.3 million copies in the United States in the first 12 days of sales, total sales is most likely well beyond that still.  Yet the case is trying to be made that Halo 3 and other violent games like cause kids to out lash in that fashion.  If 94% of all teenagers play video games regularly and a large amount of those teenagers purchased Halo 3, can you really say that one action by a teenage boy is the cause of Halo 3?  Personally, I would think no.  I would think the boy had a psychological problem in the first place and games should not be blamed for the cause of this.  This has happened a lot lately, games being the ones people blamed.  If we look back on history people have blamed television, movies, all forms of entertainment before they fully enter society.  I believe it was wrong how the news program presented this and would like to inform you that I think it is wrong to blame video games for something like this.  The problems were obviously not singly due to video games.  He had many other problems besides that, yet the media focused on the video games.  I find it wrong to see the media industry doing this and would like to see an end of the constant blame people give to video games.   

Sincerely,

Blake Gross

If you would like to write a letter as well send it to the morningshow@wkyc.com.  I am presonally outraged by how the media handled this giving video games the blame for a mental problem the child obviously had.  

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

I just hope you deleted all the paragraph breaks to post it here... that's just a lot of text to lump together all at once.

But if it's anything like the other "news" outlets, it'll prolly skip right to the recycle bin, I'm afraid. :/

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Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

Remember, novels were considered pornography when they first appeared =D.

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

Yay, another case for an ex-lawyer to involve himself in.

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

I have to say something in favor of old Jacko: he haven´t trolled GP since many weeks ago. If he don´t come here to troll with this new case, I can say he really is trying...

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Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

I think he hasn't bothered to get around his most recent ban.

I say unban the wacko! I miss the entertainment.

Saying that Jack Thompson is impotent is an insult to impotent men everywhere. They've got a whole assortment of drugs that can cure their condition; Jack, however...

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

"I say unban the wacko! I miss the entertainment."

Seconded. I need my 1u1z.

"No... let's not and say we didn't."

1u1zkiller is killing 1u1z. Begone.

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"Game on, brothers and sisters." -Leet Gamer Jargon

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Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

No... let's not and say we didn't.

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

Hopefully the jury will be wise enough not to assume the violence of the video game had anything to do with the shootings.

And if the kid had cabin fever before, he's really going to be crazy now that he's comitted a violent crime, what with being locked up in jail and all.

If you go crazy then I will still call you Superman.

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

An terrible event, but, as Frank Zappa said, it could have been anything that set him off, especially if he was suffering from 'Cabin Fever' or a form of it.

 

I hope the young man gets the help he needs.

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

This kid is just disgusting.

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

You're lucky you can't imagine what his parents could have done to him to make him do this.

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

Epic fail to the father for placing the console/game in the same box as the 9mm.

Sortableturnip's Law: As an online discussion of video game violence grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Jack Thompson approaches 1

Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

Since this kid evidently has more than a bit of a psychological problem if he is willing to go that far, I would have to agree.  It makes me wonder how the kid was acting before he got the game, if he ever had a history of being physically violent, and much more...   This just isn't right, and this kid definitely needs help.  If he wasn't screwed up enough before, once he fully realizes what he has done to his mom, he will be fucked up for the rest of his life.

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Re: Trial of Teen Who Shot Parents Thrusts Halo 3 into Media

I dunno. I mean, did he honestly expect such drastic actions? It was locked inside a lockbox, first of all. So his son had to take the effort to break into it. But then to go as far as shoot them? I can't say the father has any fault in it, regardless, as it's not like he put the game and the gun on a kitchen counter.

In the end, this kid was just that insane.

 
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