Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

January 13, 2009 -

As GamePolitics reported yesterday, a judge in Lorain County, Ohio ruled that 17-year-old Daniel Petric was guilty of shooting his parents in a dispute over whether or not the teen could play Halo 3. Petric's mother was killed in the 2007 incident.

A comment made by Judge James Burge during the delivery of his verdict in the case of gamer Petric is getting wide play in both the mainstream and gaming press:

I firmly believe that Daniel Petric had no idea at the time he hatched this plot that if he killed his parents, they would be dead forever.

Pretty negative toward games, right? But Burge's full remarks are much worse. GamePolitics created the transcript below from a video of the sentencingwhich is posted on the website of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

By way of context, Judge Burge explains that expert testimony during Petric's trial failed to establish an insanity defense, forcing him to find Petric guilty as charged. But the judge apparently believes that the young man is deeply troubled and that video games are a primary factor:

The Court must enter a finding of guilty on the counts set forth in the indictment. That being said, it's my firm belief as a human being - and not as a jurist - that Daniel does suffer from a serious defect of the mind.

 

This Court's opinion is that we don't know enough about these video games. In this particular case, not so much the violence of the game because I believe in the Halo 3, what it amounts to is a contest to see who can shoot the most aliens who attack.

 

It's my firm belief that after a while the same physiological responses occur that occur in the ingestion of some drugs. And I believe that an addiction to these games can do the same thing. The dopamine surge, the stimulation  of the nucleus accumbens - the same as an addiction. Such that when you stop, your brain won't stand for it.

 

The other dangerous thing about these games, in my opinion, is that when these changes occur, they occur in an environment that is delusional. Because you can shoot these aliens, and they're there again the next day. You have to shoot them again. And I firmly believe that Daniel Petric had no idea, at the time he hatched this plot, that if he killed his parents, they would be dead forever.

Burge's parting shot seems to indicate a belief on the judge's part that we haven't heard the last of Daniel Petric and his supposed video game issues:

But I believe there is hope here. I believe that it will start here and, uh, at some point when all is known about Daniel and what occurred here we will be able to achieve a greater sense of justice.


Comments

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

When you think about it, swords like knights had were crosses.  Heavy, sharp, metal crosses that could really do some damage

 

"That's not ironic. That's justice."

"That's not ironic. That's justice."

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Works in Castlevania...

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

*hands MrKlorox an Internet*

You've won it.

GRAND CROSS!!!


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

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"A Chrono Trigger is anything that unleashes its will or desire to change history!" -Gaspar

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

If the Judge thinks he's that mentally unbalanced, there is no way he should have been found guilty. On the other hand, given that he tried to frame someone else for the crime, I'd say the judge is probably just full of ****.

Also, can Derovius be banned on the grounds that he's a collosal prick?

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

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

"If the Judge thinks he's that mentally unbalanced, there is no way he should have been found guilty. On the other hand, given that he tried to frame someone else for the crime, I'd say the judge is probably just full of ****."

 Thanks for failing to grasp the concept of criminal insanity.

"Also, can Derovius be banned on the grounds that he's a collosal prick?"

 No, I can't. If I could, I'd have been banned a long time ago. Now stfu.

 

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

So you ARE a colossal prick?

Jack Thompson: future Good Burger employee of the month

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Honestly I think Derovius makes a lot of good points and I see no reasaon why he should be banned.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

The fact that for every meaningful comment he makes, he makes about 30 troll comments isnt reason enough?

"Go ahead and hate your neighbor, go ahead and cheat a friend. Do it in the name of Heaven, Jack Thompson'll justify it in the end." - nightwng2000

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

And what, pray tell, is YOUR definition of "Criminal Insanity."

Let's go Derovius, put yourself on the line, what do you think criminal insanity means?

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

There really is only one definition of criminally insane. You have to fit BOTH rules of consideration in most courts

1) The defendant was not able to control his or her actions at the time of the incident

2) The defendant did not know what they were doing at the time was wrong

This is based on the fact that in order to be convicted of a crime there must be both an action and an intent for said action.

 "Defendents who are criminally insane cannot be convicted of a crime since criminal conduct involves the conscious intent to do wrong -- a choice that the criminally insane cannot meaningfully make."

That is the gist of the reasoning behind being criminally insane. His actions prevented the judge from being able to use this criteria. The insanity defense is not used all too often because it's not very successful. There are a few individuals who truly were insane and really needed the mental health that would have gone along with it. Andrea Yates is one of them. Her defense did not go through despite fitting the criteria

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Why not? that was why Jack Thompson was banned

though I don't want you to be banned Devo, because you are the eminent douchebag of the comments and you make me LOL at your utter retardation.

There have always been motherf*ckers, there will always be motherf*ckers, but what we can't do is let them control our motherf*cking lives. -John Oliver, December 1st, 2008

There have always been motherf*ckers, there will always be motherf*ckers, but what we can't do is let them control our motherf*cking lives. -John Oliver, December 1st, 2008

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

"Why not? that was why Jack Thompson was banned"

 Thompson was banned because he's threatened Dennis and members of this community. I'm sure even someone like you knows the difference between a threat and mockery.

"though I don't want you to be banned Devo, because you are the eminent douchebag of the comments and you make me LOL at your utter retardation."

 I live to serve.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

No, there were times he was banned for being a colossal prick as well.

Keep in mind that Jack Thompson being banned from GP has been an on and off thing. Over time Dennis decided to draw the ban line at threats, and just censor any jackassery that was off topic for a given news article. Thompson being who he is, that was usually the case.

-Gray17

-Gray17

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

 ''because I believe in the Halo 3, what it amounts to is a contest to see who can shoot the most aliens who attack.''

 o..k.. i have NEVER played halo against anyone competitively to see 'who can shoot the most aliens'.

EVER.

EVER.

 

''It's my firm belief that after a while the same physiological responses occur that occur in the ingestion of some drugs. ''

And its my belief that pigs fly. Doesnt mean it has any place even being mentioned in a courtroom. Especially when you have no medical expertise and thus have no authority to make such a statement.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Techinically there is a campaign scoring in the game, where you can compete with the other players with you in campaign.  And your kills directly affect that score.

Now that is in no way what the game is all about, just pointing out that such a scoring system exists.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

I don't understand where the details of what happens in Halo 3 have any bearing on the issue, since the kid apparently never played the game.  I've never heard of a person getting addicted to drugs he never took, so I'm finding it difficult to see how a kid could be psychologically warped by playing a game he never played.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Hahaha, I love how everyone was happy and complimenting the judge on the previous story, but now that his full remarks are out, we've got a whole page of "zomg he's retarded kick him off the bench!!"  That'll learn us for celebrating prematurely! ;|

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The Mammon Industry

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Fangamer

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Sadly very true

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

And he's qualified to make statements on the physio-chemical aspects of video game addiction because...?

I see the point that Petric may well be psychologically damaged person, but that's a long ways from 'video games made him do it.'  Maybe Petric was a deeply antisocial person who just didn't like other people and devoted himself to hobbies that didn't involve human interaction - such as video games.  Obsessive game playing might have been a symptom of a deeper problem rather than the root of the problem itself.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

 Excuse me Dr. Benji, care to show us your Medical Degree in Psychopharmacology? Oh wait, this is the internet, where you can a foot long penis and a million bucks just by willing it.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

I never claimed to be an expert in any medical field - simply expressing skepticism at the judge's comments about the science of addiction because I suspect he also is not an expert in any medical field.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Actually though, he did bring up some of the inner workings of addiction when he mentioned the "dopamine surge" (I'll forgive his terminology there because the proper term is esentially that) and the interaction with the nucleus accumbus were important. He seems to know a bit more than the average lay person, but he is a bit off. Most studies (around 85%) show childrens exposure to violent media (be it video games, movies, books, anything pretty much) causes an increase in aggression, NOT psychosis. It would have to have been a prexisting condition or a genetic predisposition to addictive habits that would have caused this state of psychosis. The fact he wasn't even remotely within the age range where this media content would have drastically affected him makes it look worse for his mental health. Of course, nobody is debating whether this guy was crazy or not.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Don't you mean psychology? Psychopharmacology, more better known as psychiatrists is a different field.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

 No, I mean psychopharmacology. The study of chemical interactions within the brain.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

"The study of chemical interactions within the brain."

More specifically, the effect of external drugs on the mind hence the Pharma portion of it, not the chemical interactions within the brain itself isolated from external drugs, as the judge was talking about.

http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn?s=psychopharmacology

http://www.medilexicon.com/medicaldictionary.php?t=73692

neuropsychopharmacology is listed as a synonym.

for instance these people would study things like antidepressants and such, drugs that directly affect mood and behaviours, etc...

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I am a signature virus, please copy and paste me into your signature to help me propagate.

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Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

ooooh fun stuff.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

 He is analyzing the problem properly, but he is falling short of one simple truth. Anything you enjoy will become an addiction in the right conditions. Sex, chocolate, the internet, illegal and legal drugs, alcohol, social interaction, social isolation, etc., etc.

 Violence has been around since primatives humans learne that if they hit each other upside the head with those heavy round things on the ground enough times that the victim never got back up. There is as much an arguement against firearms, social isolations and parenting here as there is against gaming. The problem is that gaming is as common knowledge as the above, save maybe social isolation, and makes a magnificant scapegoat. Nothing more.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Actually it's been around since the existence of carnivores, and since our ancestors had to hunt they must've known that if you hurt something badly enough they die.

----------------------------------------------------

Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

It's okay, I feel like I need some SSRI's (anti-depressants like zoloft or prozac), I feel depressed just thinking about this.

I guess when you're a judge you can be illogical as can be and people STILL think you make sense! I say one of us should be a judge and use the justice system the way we see fit. That'll show them! 

Okay, zoloft time.

Only by letting strangers in can we find new ways to be ourselves.

Only by letting strangers in can we find new ways to be ourselves.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

"I guess when you're a judge you can be illogical as can be and people STILL think you make sense!"

It's the robe.
 

 

Praetorian

"I've been told I'm the resident skeptic, but I wouldn't believe that."

ECA Seattle Chapter

http://www.myspace.com/pree_tawr_ee_uhn



Praetorian

"If you sit by the river long enough, you will see the body of your enemy floating by."

http://www.myspace.com/pree_tawr_ee_uhn

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

The judge seems to forget something: Games do not KILL the person if 'overdosed.'

Correct me if i'm wrong, but don't physiological addictions deal with FOREIGN chemicals entering the body, not just those the body makes naturally? (Hence why there would even be classifications between psychological and physiological addictions in the first place?)

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Well, technically they can. If you play a three day marathon with no sleep, food or bathroom breaks you could kill your self. But I really isn't the game killing you, just your stupid self ignoring your physical needs.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

 EZK has failed to attack the invalidity of the base statement properly.

 Sex can be addictive, however, having sex until your fun bits are raw will not kill you. Nymphomania, a classic psychology condition catalogued in the Psychologists Handbook is the addiction to sex such to the point you are unable to interact properly with your environment, be it feed yourself, work, sleep, etc. You will not die of Nymphomania, you may die of starvation, dehydration, shock/cardiac arrest (from lack of sleep), etc.

 So no, you cannot die from being addicted to games. You can however die from complications related to said addiction. Now insert EZK's comment.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

That just sounds like a long winded version of what I said. Besides bringing in the sex addiction, you really added nothing to my comment.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

 Sex is the spice of life, with it I turned your piece of shit comment into foie gras.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Lol True that :)

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Actually variety is the spice of life.

And when you're tlaking about addictions it's usually the opposite of variety.

----------------------------------------------------

Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

---------------------------------------------------- Debates are like merry go rounds. Two people take their positions then they go through the same points over and over and over again. Then when it's over they have the same positions they started in.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

you make me LOL Devo, you're an ass but I LOL all the same.

There have always been motherf*ckers, there will always be motherf*ckers, but what we can't do is let them control our motherf*cking lives. -John Oliver, December 1st, 2008

There have always been motherf*ckers, there will always be motherf*ckers, but what we can't do is let them control our motherf*cking lives. -John Oliver, December 1st, 2008

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Riiiight...

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

And here I was giving this guy credit.  I take it back.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

 Why? Because you disagree with his position? ****

AE: Too far.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

That's exactly why. He's no different than the critics of comic books, TV, rock and roll and such.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Pretty much, I thought he had sense enough to see that videos games don't cause people to murder, but apparently, I was wrong, of course, not like I'd listen to anyways seeing as he's a troll.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Okay, this article makes my head hurt.

So, the court found him sane, and the judge doesn't seem to think that a 17 year old boy realizes that death is forever?

This still sounds like a parenting issue. I knew by the age of six that death was forever, albeit I learned the hard way by losing a sibling to a heart problem.

If the parents had sat down and talked with him at any age about death, then this would have been avoided.

*sigh* I need some aspirin...or do those make me violent too?

Praetorian

"I've been told I'm the resident skeptic, but I wouldn't believe that."

ECA Seattle Chapter

http://www.myspace.com/pree_tawr_ee_uhn



Praetorian

"If you sit by the river long enough, you will see the body of your enemy floating by."

http://www.myspace.com/pree_tawr_ee_uhn

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Where did the defendant actually ever say he thought that they wouldn't be dead?

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

The definition of criminal insanity differs from medical insanity. He obviously had some understanding of his actions, and the consequences, given that he tried to frame someone else. If he blew both his parents away, ran and pluged his xbox and started playing while they lay bleeding to death on the floor pleading for help, than yeah he would be criminally insane.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

I take back my comment in the previous thread about the intelligence of this mentally challenged judge.

He ran his mouth, yet said that the defense wasn't a defense?

Geaux Saints, Geaux Tigers, Geaux Hornets, Jack Thompson can geaux chase a chupacabra.

Geaux Saints, Geaux Tigers, Geaux Pelicans. Solidarity for the Saints = No retreat, no surrender. 2013 = Saints' revenge on the NFL. Even through the darkest days, this fire burns always.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

I think we need to put all people over the age of 50 to sleep like we do with our dogs when they become too old to function properly.

A little extreme there, but you bring up a very good point... After a certain age, people forget that times have changed. I hear stories from friends about how their grandparents are still very openly racist, and have no intention of changing. 

Not saying we're going to put them to sleep, cause that'll be just wrong, there HAS to be a better way, I just don't know of one. 

Only by letting strangers in can we find new ways to be ourselves.

Only by letting strangers in can we find new ways to be ourselves.

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

Hi! My name is Logan and I'm on the Run

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Hookers and Ice Cream aren't free. http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/comics/stolen-pixels/5137-...

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Hookers and Ice Cream aren't free. http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/comics/stolen-pixels/5137-...

Re: Judge Comes Down Hard on Video Games in Halo 3 Murder Trial

You can't deny them rights or liberty for being old.

 
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