"Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

January 19, 2009 -

Lamar Roberts is going away for a long time.

In December, the 18-year-old pleaded guilty in the December, 2007 death of 7-year-old Zoe Garcia, the step-sister of Roberts' girlfriend, Heather Trujillo. Roberts and Trujillo reportedly acted out moves from Mortal Kombat on Zoe.

9News reports that a Colorado judge has sentenced Roberts to 36 years in prison. Of the sentence, Roberts told the court:

I do agree to get what I get. I'm not a monster, your honor. I'm truly sorry (for) what happened.

Roberts, who was 17 at the time of the slaying, was tried as an adult. Trujillo received 18 years, but her sentence will be suspended if she successfully completes a six-year program for youthful offenders.


Comments

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Absolute Idiocy. I would think this would send a message to all the opportunistic lawyers trying to use the "games made me do it" defense. Why is it that common sense is becoming so uncommon??

-There is no greater sin, than that of the man who does not think for himself.

There is no greater sin, than that of the man who does not think for himself.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

I have oft times asked that and determined that Common Sense up and left for a better climate, maybe near the south pole. 

Sadly a vast majority of lawyers are parasites or a blight on society (firmly held beliefs even before JBT).  Think it was Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain) who spoken of improving society by shooting the lawyers. 

Still find it odd that while the boyfriend gets 36 years (means he could be out in 6) the step-sister only needs to complete some class and be observed for 6 years yet she was part of it.  Ah well. 

 

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

And before Mr. Clemens it was Shakespeare. "The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers."

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Well admittedly it makes sense ^_^; All Lawyers are anti-Justice...They care about one thing, winning that case to show off their impressive record. The Prosecutor(unless he's really new or extremely dedicated to his job not his money) wants proof he's doing his job right even if there's a chance that the defendant is innocent, and the Defendant wants to show that he's worth the money even if it means letting a vile human walk out into the streets to cause more mayhem...it's kinda scary.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

At least this person has now accepted responsibility for their actions and respects the judge's decision instead of just trying to blame his actions on a videogame.

And no he is not a monster, but he did do a really stupid thing that resulted in a child's death.

If people in society can think about what they are doing before doing something so stupid instead of trying to blame their actions on a videogame. Then I believe that we as gamers don't really have to suffer from all of the mainstreem attention on our favorite past time.

 

TBoneTony

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Honestly, take it with a grain of salt, I know guys that do that just to get outta jail early on Parole. It is possible to trick the system so while there is a -chance- he's really appologetic, odds are his lawyer said, don't buck it, take the sentance do a couple years with your head down and maybe we can get you out early for good behavior. Just speculation on my part but concidering I've seen a lot of guys pull this, I'd say it's a likely senario.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Woulda been funnier if the judge just ripped their spines out there and then in court.

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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: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

No, he should have taken off his mask and burned them to death.

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Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

I was thinking something creative with the gavel...

"There is no sin except stupidity." - Oscar Wilde

"De minimus non curat lex"

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

It's ridiculous that they're being put in jail like this. That they thought at the time that what they were doing was okay shows that they were just stupid, or being stupid.

Now three lives have been lost, any good that these two could have done in their lives has been destroyed.

Not to downplay that they killed someone, and I don't know how rough they were being, but to me it sounds like horseplay gone horribly wrong.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Personally, I am glad they are getting such trash off the street at such an early age. That just mean we have 36 and 18 years respectively free from them doing something even worse.

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

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Previous articles note that Roberts had a history of abusive behavior toward Zoe, especially when he'd been drinking.  This kid was a punk, and now he'll have all the time in the world to think about it.

"There is no sin except stupidity." - Oscar Wilde

"De minimus non curat lex"

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

I'm actually suprised. Thirty-six years sounds fairly lenient for a case involving the death of a child. Given the circumstances it makes sense though. Still I expected people to be calling for the death penality, with much wailing and gnashing of teeth...

Or at least some protestor out in the street carrying a sign that read, "FINISH HIM!"

My point being, I really wanted to use that line...

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Nothing will bring that poor girl back, but this news lifts the spirits.  Always good to see a murderer get what he deserves; they should toss his lawyer in there with him for a few months for even trying the video game defense.

With every case like this, more precedent is set for our side.  Love it.

"There is no sin except stupidity." - Oscar Wilde

"De minimus non curat lex"

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

"I do agree to get what I get. I'm not a monster, Your Honor. I am truly sorry for what happened."

Wow. One would think he got all the rehabilitation he needs.

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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: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

The US criminal justice system is just so aweful. No wonder you have to highest prision population anywhere. What was it again, one out of 30 Americans is in either prison right now, or currently on parole?

Of course, for most people here, the worst thing this guy did was blame videogames (or let the media do it). That alone deserves a life sentence, it seems.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Um, did you even realize that he killed a child?  How is the criminal justice system "aweful" if he got put away in prison for that crime?  

Or are you just trying to troll?

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

I'm not complaining about the prison sentence, but the length of the term. If he had killed someone in cold blood, maybe we could talk about 36 years. As far as we can tell though, this case comes down to what is essentially an accident, with something like maybe wilful negliance on part of the two teens.

Also, sending one daugther to prison for 18 years after the other daughter just died is exactly what that family needs, I'm sure. And yes, I know about the 6-year plea deal, which makes the whole thing barely acceptable, thank god.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

I didn't realize that family tragedy allowed the other members a get out of jail free card.

Also, it is kinda hard to feel bad for someone who beat a child to death in cold blood.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

They didn't accidentally kill a little girl. They beat her sensless and killed her in the process. This was a case of cold blooded killing. They showed no compassion toward the little girl at all. Had they shown some compassion or mercy, I might be able to sympathize with your position.

So you justify letting a killer go free just so her parents won't have to lose two kids? You don't make any sense.

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

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

They didn't accidentally kill a little girl. They beat her sensless and killed her in the process. This was a case of cold blooded killing. They showed no compassion toward the little girl at all.

He did not intend to kill her - that is absolutely the impression I get from reading the coverage on this site and the source articles linked from here.

So you justify letting a killer go free just so her parents won't have to lose two kids? You don't make any sense.

Of course I do (and nobody said anything about letting anyone go free). If one of the intents of the justice system is to provide conciliation/the ability to reach closure/peace/whatever to the victim and/or the victims relatives, then clearily it makes sense to take that into account in both directions.

It's all about what's the best path to go from here.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

I don't see how that provides closure to the victim, to have one child dead and the murderer still in the house. 

Of course, some of the other goals of our criminal justice system include, you know, actually dispensing some justice.  They committed a crime mala in se (wrong in of itself, basically), meaning a crime that is wrong in its very nature, not a crime mala prohibita (wrong because it's prohibited, something like drinking underage being a good example).  They deserved far worse than they got.

'He did not intend to kill her' my ass.  The things he did to that child aren't normal occurences or accidents, they're vicious and malovelent actions.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

I don't see how that provides closure to the victim, to have one child dead and the murderer still in the house. 

You don't see how the parents might have preferred a more lenient sentence for their daugther rather than a harsh one?

Of course, some of the other goals of our criminal justice system include, you know, actually dispensing some justice. 

The problem with justice, of course, is that nobody really knows what is is. Or at least people have vastly different opinions. They deserved far worse than they got - case in point. That's why smart people came up with a bunch of more objective criterias that can be used to justify criminal punishment, and they mostly revolve around preventing future crime.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

no offense there Miracle 2k but...

You don't see how the parents might have preferred a more lenient sentence for their daugther rather than a harsh one?

doesn't fly with me. My mother and every mother I've met has said if my daughter kills my other daughter or my grandchild...they won't even make it to the court house, so unless the family is truely oddball and can easily look said murdering child in the eye, which says something about the family and how the girl could kill her sister so easily, there is no way -none- that they'd want her back in their house. Odds are the parents are never gonna look at their daughter the same if they don't out right disown her for taking her sister away from them.

 

The blame falls on the daughter and the boyfriend...if the family didn't want to be broken up...the daughter shouldn't have killed her sister end of story....I think it's perfectly reasonable for her to go away and do the time...it's the only justice our courts can give that family and that little girl.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

My mother and every mother I've met has said if my daughter kills my other daughter or my grandchild...they won't even make it to the court house.

Well, that's just said. It also sounds like a great recipe for a lifetime of regret. At the risk of souding cheasy, odds are that most parents love for their children is unconditional, in the purest sense of the word. It's just a screwed up moral system that would make you think you have to ignore your emotions.

I don't envy you for your black and white world view. It's only simple on the surface.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Funny story, crimes like murder are considered CRIMES AGAINST THE STATE THEY WERE COMMITTED IN, so, you know, it doesn't matter what the parents want. 

Chances are that the parents are either A) incompetent (leaving the child alone with their daughter and her irresponsible and abusive boyfriend) or B) don't want the murderous little bitch around.  So having their daughter sent home scott-free would be a bad thing, especially for the family.  Imagine dealing with having a murderer or rapist at the dinner table with you.

I think its funny you deem fit to lecture me on justice, when I have a doctorate in Criminology.  Let me teach you some quick things.

1)it revolves around a few things; retribution, restitution (making the past wrong right) deterrence, and restoration.  Restoration, in this case, is obviously impossible (you know, with the dead child and all).  Prevention means PUTTING THE MURDERER IN JAIL OR EXECUTING THEM.  Deterrence means using the jail time to teach others not to fuck up.  Retribution means jailing or killing the murderers.  Notice that 1/4th of the goal was deterrence, and the rest were not.

2)Murdering a child in such a way is cruel and unusual.  There's an interesting murder case, I think it was in Utah, where a man was on the run from the cops (he just got out of a police car, IIRC), and he ran into a farmhouse and grabbed the family's shotgun.  Now, instead of leaving with the gun peacefully, he went upstairs and killed the 60 year old farmer and his wife before fleeing the house.  That was cruel and unusual.  Beating a child to death the way they did?  Also cruel and unusual.  Craziest thing, that's one of the reasons a murderer gets the death penalty, for committing an unusually depraved act.

3)as I mentioned earlier, it's a crime against the state.  That's why the case reads Jackass Murderer vs the state of wherever this is.  So, while the parents can petition for leniency, the judge can (and should) ignore it.  However, I haven't heard of the parents petitioning for leniency, meaning they're probably pretty angry with their murdering spawn.

 

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Imagine dealing with having a murderer or rapist at the dinner table with you.

Yes, I imagine he could jump me at any time. The horror! How could I possibly enjoy my soup!

Seriously, you're coming across as incredibly simple minded here - to me, anyway.

1)it revolves around a few things; retribution, restitution (making the past wrong right) deterrence, and restoration.  Restoration, in this case, is obviously impossible (you know, with the dead child and all).  Prevention means PUTTING THE MURDERER IN JAIL OR EXECUTING THEM.  Deterrence means using the jail time to teach others not to fuck up.  Retribution means jailing or killing the murderers.  Notice that 1/4th of the goal was deterrence, and the rest were not.

Actually, that sounds about right in that it seems to match what I'm used seeing from US courts. But remember how we are talking about your criminal justice system sucks?

Interesting how you consider deterrence to be about teaching others. I guess rehabilitation isn't a popular concept anymore these days.

Beating a child to death the way they did?  Also cruel and unusual.

Punching someone in the face? Cruel and uhm, unusual. It's a sliding scale, man. Everything is. Stop seeing everything in black and white. The world isn't divided in criminals and non-criminals.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Well I could give an example of how the american justice system is awful in my eyes, that of a canadian, but it really has no link to the case here. In fact I find the canadian justice system to be too lenient when it comes to serious offenses.

Im my opinion however, I find the american justice system awful in that it is too severe on what would be minor offenses here (in regards say to marijuana for example). That and the fact you can sue anybody for anything (in civil court).

But in regards to the case here, the man probably got what he deserved.

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

probably the latter... SOMEONE had to replace derovius after all...

"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: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

The latter is funnier, seeing as people like Erik are making me out as a Troll, disguised by deoVIRUS.

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

"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: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

But petri dishes are quite deep if you're an atom....

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

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: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Perhaps I'm an atom then. One can never truly tell, now can they?

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

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

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



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

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Why don't you split, then?

*ba-dum-dush*  (Sorry, had to say it)

"There is no sin except stupidity." - Oscar Wilde

"De minimus non curat lex"

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Funny how someone once said (Dalton, wasn't it?) that atoms are indivisible.

*snorts, grinning*

I feel better already! 

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

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

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



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

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

You're not really a troll.  You're about as deep as a petri dish, but not a troll.

"There is no sin except stupidity." - Oscar Wilde

"De minimus non curat lex"

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Not a Troll, says you. *snort* That's what you say, but I wasn't talking about you.

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

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

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



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

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

I know who you were talking about.  I don't consider either of you trolls, but I understand that your definition is vastly different than mine.

"There is no sin except stupidity." - Oscar Wilde

"De minimus non curat lex"

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Shadow's concept of reality is vastly different than most of ours.

The "Video game defense" will never work

Well, I'm glad these guys are going to jail.  The defense on video game made me do it is really stupid.  I read this on Kotaku 2 days ago and that  Lamar Roberts lie that Mortal Kombat made him do it.  Somebody tell Lamar that you are a disgrace to all gamers and deserved to be hated by gamers everywhere. 

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

At least he is man enough to accept his punishment.

This is why the 'Video Game Defence' doesn't work for me, emulating something else does not mean that what they were emulating caused the offence. Foe example :


 

http://www.ldnews.com/news/ci_11299232

Should we, therefore ban Police, since, obviously, people emulating them cause deaths?

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

Why ANYONE would re-enact moves from Mortal Kombat on a 7-year old child is beyond me.

Tragic...truly tragic...

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

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

alcohol...stupidity... the fact that he he wasn't...

 

still a terrible thing to happen to little child...

 

I hope this guy gets practiced on in prison...

Re: "Mortal Kombat Killer" Gets 36 Years in Child's Death

there is no practicing in prison, it is the real thing...  oh wait, you are not talking about dropping the soap...

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Mattsworknameargue that it's wrong, but then please admit it's wrong on ALL Fronts07/29/2015 - 2:06am
MattsworknameTechnoGeek: It's actually NOT, but it is a method used all across the specturm. See Rush limbaugh, MSNBC, Shawn hannity, etc etc, how many compagns have been brought up to try and shut them down by going after there advertisers. It's fine if you wanna07/29/2015 - 2:05am
Mattsworknamediscussed, while not what I liked and not the methods I wanted to see used, were , in a sense, the effort of thsoe game consuming masses to hold what they felt was supposed to be there press accountable for what many of them felt was Betrayal07/29/2015 - 2:03am
MattsworknameAs we say, the gamers are dead article set of a firestorm among the game consuming populace, who, ideally, were the intended audiance for sites like Kotaku, Polygon, Et all. As such, the turn about on them and the attacking of them, via the metods07/29/2015 - 2:03am
MattsworknameAndrew: Thats kind fo the issue at hand, Accountable is a matter of context. For a media group, it means accountable to its reader. to a goverment, to it's voters and tax payer, to a company, to it's share holders.07/29/2015 - 2:02am
Andrew EisenAnd again, you keep saying "accountable." What exactly does that mean? How is Gamasutra not accounting for the editorial it published?07/28/2015 - 11:47pm
Andrew EisenMatt - I disagree with your 9:12 and 9:16 comment. There are myriad ways to address content you don't like. And they're far easier to execute in the online space.07/28/2015 - 11:47pm
Andrew EisenMatt - Banning in the legal sense? Not that I'm aware but there have certainly been groups of gamers who have worked towards getting content they don't like removed.07/28/2015 - 11:45pm
DanJAlexander's editorial was and continues to be grossly misrepresented by her opponents. And if you don't like a site, you stop reading it - same as not watching a tv show. They get your first click, but not your second.07/28/2015 - 11:40pm
TechnogeekYes, because actively trying to convince advertisers to influence the editorial content of media is a perfectly acceptable thing to do, especially for a movement that's ostensibly about journalistic ethics.07/28/2015 - 11:02pm
Mattsworknameanother07/28/2015 - 9:16pm
Mattsworknameyou HAVE TO click on it. So they get the click revenue weather you like what it says or not. as such, the targeting of advertisers most likely seemed like a good course of action to those who wanted to hold those media groups accountable for one reason07/28/2015 - 9:16pm
MattsworknameBut, when you look at online media, it's completely different, with far more options, but far few ways to address issues that the consumers may have. In tv, you don't like what they show, you don't watch. But in order to see if you like something online07/28/2015 - 9:12pm
MattsworknameIn tv, and radio, ratings are how it works. your ratings determine how well you do and how much money you an charge.07/28/2015 - 9:02pm
Mattsworknameexpect to do so without someone wanting to hold you to task for it07/28/2015 - 9:00pm
MattsworknameMecha: I don't think anyone was asking for Editoral changes, what they wanted was to show those media groups that if they were gonna bash there own audiance, the audiance was not gonna take it sitting down. you can write what you want, but you can't07/28/2015 - 8:56pm
MattsworknameAndrew, Im asking as a practical question, Have gamers, as a group, ever asked for a game, or other item, to be banned. Im trying to see if theres any cases anyone else remembers cause I cant find or remember any.07/28/2015 - 8:55pm
Andrew EisenAs mentioned, Gamasutra isn't a gaming site, it's a game industry site. I don't feel it's changed its focus at all. Also, I don't get the sense that the majority of the people who took issue with that one opinion piece were regular readers anyway.07/28/2015 - 8:43pm
MattsworknameDitto kotaku, Gawker, VOX, Polygon, ETC07/28/2015 - 8:41pm
MechaTama31So, between pulling a game from one chain of stores, and forcing editorial changes to a media source, only one of them strikes you as being on the edge of censorship, and it's the game one?07/28/2015 - 8:41pm
 

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