On Monday GamePolitics noted that a 17-year-old boy was on trial in an Ohio courtroom for shooting his parents after they banned him from playing Halo 3.
A local Ohio newspaper is now reporting that defense attorneys are basing Daniel Petric’s defense on video game addiction. According to the Chronicle-Telegram:
“Danny was very mild and meek,” said his paternal grandfather, Michael Broeckel, who [testified] that Daniel was a normal teenager, albeit one addicted to video games.
Holly Petric, Daniel’s other sister, said her brother became obsessed with video games because of a back injury which… limited his physical activity… the infection was so severe that any extreme physical activity could have caused his spine to snap, leaving him paralyzed.
“He’d just play (video games) nonstop whenever he could,” Holly Petric said.
[Daniel’s friend] Jon Johnson… said he and Daniel would play video games, particularly “Halo 3,” up to 18 hours a day.
Jon said that while he liked video games, Daniel was addicted, even going so far as to push his friends to play the games when they wanted to do something else.
The case is expected to wrap up today. The Cleveland Plain Dealer has additional coverage.
UPDATE: The Chronicle-Telegram reports that Petric’s attorney argued this morning that the teen’s supposed obsession with Halo 3 contributed to rendering him insane at the time of the shootings:
Daniel Petric’s attorney argued this morning that his client should be found not guilty by reason of insanity for the shooting death of his mother and wounding of his father last year in part because the 17-year-old was obsessed with the video game “Halo 3.”
James Kersey said Daniel, who is being tried as an adult, went looking for the sci-fi video game, not his father’s 9 mm handgun on Oct. 20, 2007. The boy’s parents, Sue and Mark Petric, had taken the game away from the boy less than a month before the shootings.