For all the talk about video games causing crimes, we don't often hear about the times when they may well prevent them. Thomas Frongillo, age 18, has been arrested on charges of threatening to commit a crime after making statements about shooting up the college that he attended, but the threats were not made in person. They were made in an online game
run by Jagex
, most likely RuneScape
, which is what led to his arrest.
Frongillo allegedly said, "I'm going to shoot up my school tomorrow," and indicated a knowledge of firearms to other players in the game. He also made anti-Semitic comments and had indicated shooting at small wildlife in previous chat sessions. Jagex employees notified the police, and he is currently on bail pending his court date on April 19th. Frongillo's lawyers claim that the statements were made in jest and that the young man had no intention of carrying out any acts of violence.