Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

March 26, 2010 -

Peter Watts, narrative designer for Homeworld 2, Crysis 2, and the Big Mutha Truckers series, who had a run in with U.S. Customs officers on the U.S./Canadian boarder last December, has been convicted of assaulting, resisting, and obstructing a Customs and Border Protection officer. 

Watts, who hails from Toronto, was crossing the bridge to Canada when he was stopped for a random inspection on the American side. According to his lawyer, Watts was beaten several times, and then pepper sprayed in the face.

Watts continues to protest his innocence but claims that he will accept the outcome of the case:

I have no complaints about the jury. The fact that it took them so bloody long to deliberate suggests to me that they took their job seriously. Based on what little I could tell during the selection process, they seemed like decent folks. And while I profoundly disagree with their verdict, I can certainly see how they arrived at it, given the constraints of the statute.

Watts faces a possible three-year prison term and fines of $5,000 at his April 24th sentencing.


Comments

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

Ok, so wouldn't accepting the outcome of the case be considered as guilty?

 

 

"It's better to be hated for who you are, then be loved for who you are not." - Montgomery Gentry

"It's better to be hated for who you are, then be loved for who you are not." - Montgomery Gentry

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

*Ahem*

Fuck tha police
Comin straight out the underground
Young nigga got it bad cuz I'm brown
And not the other color so police think
They have the authority to kill a minority

Fuck that shit, cuz I ain't tha one
For a punk muthafucka with a badge and a gun
To be beatin on, and throwin in jail
We could go toe to toe in the middle of a cell

Fuckin with me cuz I'm a teenager
With a little bit of gold and a pager
Searchin my car, lookin for the product
Thinkin every nigga is sellin narcotics

Not all cops, mind you, but the ones that abuse their power and THEN get a guy sentenced to some bullshit "obstruction" charge. It is very clear that Watt is innocent in this, and I pray that the border officer gets just desserts (hopefully through the legal system, but even a bad case of karma would suffice), and I also hope that Watts appeals this by arguing that "obstruction" was not done in this case.

-Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

-Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

Yep, it's very clear he's innocent.  That's why he's going to jail, right?

---

You KILL Vampires. You don't DATE them.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

It's very clear that he did nothing wrong and should not be sentenced, and that the only reason that the jury sentenced him is because:

"Even members of the jury, who did convict him, have felt they felt constrained by the words of the law.  None deny that he did what he did (not obey in a timely manner)."

So, yes, he's innocent. He "committed a crime" because he didn't sit down fast enough after getting BEATEN UP BY A COP.

-Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

-Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

If you violate the letter of the law, you violate the law.  Twelve people unanimously voted that he was guilty of violating the law, based on the letter of the law.  This isn't innocence, it's guilt.

---

You KILL Vampires. You don't DATE them.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

Just because something is "against the law" doesn't mean that it should be. I'm arguing that while he violated the letter of the law, he didn't do anything wrong and thus shouldn't be punished.

-Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

-Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

While he is, unless the conviction is turned, guilty of an unlawful act (no, he is not innocent), doesn't mean he is wrong or had any choice in the matter. Laws are not perfects, and while they are better than nothing, I believe in this specific occasion, I'll side with most and say the outcome SHOULDN'T be jail and/or fine. What it'll be is something entirelly different. Also, THE LAW does make mistake. Not as often as it gets it right, but our systems of law are faillible at best.

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

He absolutely had a choice in the matter.  He could have chosen to do as he was told, thereby NOT breaking the law.  Instead, he just stood there asking why, which is what broke the law in the first place.

---

You KILL Vampires. You don't DATE them.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

He may be guilty of "committing a crime," but he's not guilty of doing anything wrong, is what I'm saying. (The English language is too vague sometimes =/)

-Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

-Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis-It is best to endure what you cannot change-

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

That I can agree with, to a certain extent, but "not doing anything wrong" and being innocent are not always the same thing.

---

You KILL Vampires. You don't DATE them.

--- With the first link, the chain is forged.

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

I think this is what Watts was convicted under:

750.81d Assaulting, battering, resisting, obstructing, opposing person performing duty; felony; penalty; other violations; consecutive terms; definitions.

(1) Except as provided in subsections (2), (3), and (4), an individual who assaults, batters, wounds, resists, obstructs, opposes, or endangers a person who the individual knows or has reason to know is performing his or her duties is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 2 years or a fine of not more than $2,000.00, or both.

 

(a) "Obstruct" includes the use or threatened use of physical interference or force or a knowing failure to comply with a lawful command.

If I've got the right law, I don't know how he could be facing up to 3 years and $5k in fines unless he somehow caused "a bodily injury requiring medical attention or medical care."

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

Just to clarify, in clear terms:

He was convicted of obstruction. He was not convicted of assault.

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

Yeah but that wouldn't be sensationalist enough for new improved GP.

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

I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

-------------------------------------------------- I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

Someone has anger issues >>


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Copyright infringement is nothing more than civil disobedience to a bad set of laws. Let's renegotiate them.

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Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

At the risk of joining the pedantic folk all over the net where this is being talked about, Mr. Watts was convicted of obstructing/resisting a lawful order from the customs officials (which doesn't require violence to be convicted of).

The "choking" was disproved.  There was no violence done by Mr. Watts. There was obstruction/resistance which was that he didn't follow instructions.  Even members of the jury, who did convict him, have felt they felt constrained by the words of the law.  None deny that he did what he did (not obey in a timely manner).

The Observer is guilding the lily with "assault".  He was accused of it, but it was disproven.

I honestly don't know what I would have done in his position.  Probably would have been intimidated and just let it happen.

 

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

I'd prefer trial transcripts but this from Watts's blog is nevertheless interesting:

"What constitutes “failure to comply with a lawful command” is open to interpretation... So what it came down to, ultimately, was those moments after I was repeatedly struck in the face by Beaudry (an event not in dispute, incidentally). After Beaudry had finished whaling on me in the car, and stepped outside, and ordered me out of the vehicle; after I’d complied with that, and was standing motionless beside the car, and Beaudry told me to get on the ground — I just stood there, saying “What is the problem?”, just before Beaudry maced me.

And that, said the Prosecutor in her final remarks — that, right there, was failure to comply. That was enough to convic...

Whether that’s actual noncompliance or simply slow compliance is, I suspect, what the jury had to decide. That’s what they did, and while I think they made the wrong decision I’m obviously not the most impartial attendee at this party."

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

I qiah for the best possible outcome for Mr. Watts.

http://www.magicinkgaming.com/

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

"Qiah"?

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Writer Found Guilty of Border Assault

Odd I know I typed down hope and hot Qiah.  It even showed hope on the preview screen for me.

http://www.magicinkgaming.com/

 
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MattsworknameCall it waht you wil, but thats how its viewed, not just by me, but by just about EVERYONE right now. Media, new networks, they dont' want to call it what it is, soe they call it "accountability"07/29/2015 - 11:34pm
Andrew Eisen"Gamasutra... had to pay" Yes. That's EXACTLY what it was. "Accountability" is and always was horse poop.07/29/2015 - 11:29pm
MattsworknameSo to speak07/29/2015 - 11:28pm
MattsworknameThats why this happened, you get people who felt hurt, marginalize, bettrayd, or otherwise offended, and they don't actually look at teh facts, they just attack and try to get there Blood for Blood07/29/2015 - 11:28pm
Mattsworknamefalse. Weather you think the article was right or not, there was a large group who felt taht gamastura and the other media sites had to pay for there actions, weather they deserved it or not07/29/2015 - 11:27pm
Andrew EisenTrying to yank advertising over a single opinion piece on a site that I would bet money most of the offended (if you will) didn't read, is no more an attempt at accountability than the Brown shooting's subsequent riots.07/29/2015 - 11:27pm
MattsworknameMy point andrew is that it's not about them, its about the people responding to the situation. THe brown shooting was eventually shown to be completely justified, but the "Black lives matter" meme kept on rolling despite all it's intiall claims being07/29/2015 - 11:26pm
Andrew EisenDude, you're comparing an opinion piece with someone who was shot to death. Gamasutra and Alexander already were accountable for the opinion piece in question.07/29/2015 - 11:25pm
Mattsworknamekinds of events. nor has it stopped them from being asshats in my opinion, but in there view, they have to hold someone accountible for recent events, so they are doing what they think they must, even if it's based on falsehoods07/29/2015 - 11:22pm
MattsworknameAndrew: It's really a matter of context for the people involved. For example. The "Black lives matter" thing is based on an entirely false account of events in the brown shooting, but that hasnt' stopped it from triyng to hold Polititcians accountable for07/29/2015 - 11:22pm
Andrew EisenWouldn't surprise me. A lot of words' actual meanings escape many people on the internet.07/29/2015 - 11:17pm
Andrew EisenSo, "they must be held accountable" means "we must hurt them for publishing an opinion piece we don't like."07/29/2015 - 11:17pm
Mattsworknameor me thats demanding accountability on this, it's the ones who undertook the actiosn against these sites and went after the advertisers07/29/2015 - 11:13pm
MattsworknameJust cause you or I disagree with there response, they still feel they have a right to hold Groups like kotaku, gamasutra, Gawker, ET all, to account for what they felt was a vile and inappropriate action. Regardless of your or my view on it, it's nto you07/29/2015 - 11:13pm
Mattsworknamebetrayed or insulted by the articles in question, then they will feel a need to hold those media groups, regardless of intent, to account for that action, be it right or wrong.07/29/2015 - 11:12pm
MattsworknameAndrew: :target audience or not, if a large enough portion of our audience has a given view point Andrew, then you risk aggrivating that audience at your own peril. your question has been answer. if a large enough part of a media groups audience felt07/29/2015 - 11:11pm
Andrew EisenMy original question (which I've posed to you four or five times now) still stands.07/29/2015 - 11:04pm
Andrew EisenMatt - Yes, non-industry folk are welcome to and do read Gamasutra. That doesn't change the fact that they're not the site's target audience. Which wasn't my point anyway, merely an offered clarification as you keep referring to it like it's IGN.07/29/2015 - 11:04pm
MattsworknameNo different then GG ttrying to get Vox, Kotaku, gawker, and other such sties to fold cause they disagree, it's not right, but it's also the most common and most widely used of methods now adays.07/29/2015 - 10:21pm
MattsworknameTechnogeek: No, there isn't, you or I have no right to say someone cant say something, no matter how much we may dislike it. Even if you hate what they said, they have a right to say it. trying to shut someone down cause you don[t like what they say, is07/29/2015 - 10:20pm
 

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