Daily Mail’s Narrative on ‘GTA V-Inspired’ Bank Robbery Falls Apart

MCV points out a pretty astonishing story that recently appeared in the UK newspaper the Daily Mail. The story, "CCTV shows dramatic moment 'model pupil', 15, held up bank workers at gunpoint in Grand Theft Auto-style robbery," refers to a 15-year-old boy who a UK judge said seemed to be under the "evil influence of video games" (you can read about it here). In its continuing coverage of the story, the Daily Mail offers several bullet points to show that the youngster was under the influence of violent media, but delving deeper into what the court had to say during hearings, you can see that the Daily Mail's spin on the story falls to pieces.

At one point later in the transcript Judge Clement Goldstone said that 'it was not that sort of case at all' (a case where someone was acting out a scene from a violent video game or movie) because the boy's family would not allow him to watch 'inappropriate' television programs, films, or video games.

In fact, the 15-year-old was arrested because his mom found the fake gun he used to rob the bank, along with the dye-stained cash from the robbery. She turned him in shortly thereafter. Prosecutor Kim Egerton also acknowledged that the young boy came from a good home with parents who tried to instill in him a sense of right and wrong:

"She (his mother) had raised him to understand if he did something wrong there would be consequences and though she loved her son it was the right thing to do."

"'As such, my lord, the honesty, integrity, and decency of this family shone through by their action," she concluded.

So if the Daily Mail's "GTA V made him do it scenario" falls apart, then what caused the youngster to rob the bank?

According to testimony to the court, he robbed the bank because he "envied the material possessions of his friends” but also wanted “to reduce the financial burden on his family, who were having to pay for private tuition for him as his school grades were declining."

Source: MCV

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