Teen charged with harassing antigame activist

Jack Thompson claims 16-year-old boy who made death threats against him arrested at high school.

A 16-year-old Texas gamer who threatened to torture and kill antigaming pundit Jack Thompson was arrested earlier today at his high school by the Harris Country Sheriff's Office, according to Thompson, a Florida attorney.

"The specifics of the torture with which Thompson was threatened are so grotesque that they cannot be properly placed in this news release," Thompson wrote in a mass e-mail addressed to news outlets, politicians, and industry groups. "The torture was to end with the shooting of Thompson, as in this teen's favorite games."

The Sheriff's Office public information officer, Lt. John Martin, could not confirm for GameSpot that the child had been arrested because the detective and sergeant assigned to the case had both left for the day. However, he did confirm that the boy had been charged with harassing communication, a misdemeanor offense. Harassing communication can either be a class B misdemeanor with jail time of up to six months and a fine up to $2,000, or a class A misdemeanor if the accused has prior convictions, which would entail up to a year behind bars and a fine of up to $4,000. Martin noted that a sentence might be handled differently because of the accused's status as a minor.

For charges in a harassing communication case to be filed, Martin noted that the burden of proof would be on the complainant (Thompson says he taped the phone call in which the threat was made). Martin also said that whether or not the harassing party actually had the means to carry out a threat was not a determining factor in bringing charges.

"The threshold for accepting charges or declining them is whether or not the complainant was in fear for his life," Martin noted, "not whether or not the complainant had the ability to carry it out. But just making threats would be an offense in itself."

In Thompson's e-mail, the attorney tied the threat to a general campaign against him on the part of the game industry.

"'Shoot the messenger' is the video game industry's strategy," Thompson wrote. "This time, because of the arrest in Texas, it didn't work. It backfired."

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234 comments
B0Knows
B0Knows

i still have an open challenge to jack thompson, cage fight me.

bildo2020
bildo2020

i think its hilarious. i doubt the kid was going to acctually do anything anyway....personally i dont care because the kid would have probably never been able to get to florida anyway (i know the charge was given because all that matters is if the person who complains is in fear for his life). Also, i think its really funny how people send death threats though the e-mail to celebrities, government officals, etc. and nothing is done about that. Once there is a phone call however, its a crime. how dumb! i have jack thompson. lol

FearNinja
FearNinja

I am actually from Harris County Texas. Sorry for double post and irrelevant information.

FearNinja
FearNinja

That kid is a complete idiot. Not only does he make himself look like a lunatic, but He also makes the game industry look bad. I dont like what Thompson is doing either but I'm not going to get myself thrown in jail for it.

scruffybawls
scruffybawls

barnold81 In America, one bad apple spoils the entire bunch. Always. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- shutup barnold, i think the kid was appropiately venting his anger lol. besides, texas is the home of players and pimps, im gonna PRISON BREAK that kid out of jail, cuz Harris County Jail is a really bad place, alot worse then Houston City Jail. i hope the kid doesnt get a class b or a misdemeanor, i hope they just refer him to adjudication

Sangian1
Sangian1

I totally agree with Iron_Knuckle. The poor kid. Just cuz some Jack*** doesn't like computer games he's making everyone hate him. It his own damn fault. The kid should have vented his anger on Gamespot. He could start a Jack Thompson haters union (doubt it). lol

barnold81
barnold81

In America, one bad apple spoils the entire bunch. Always.

crackman64
crackman64

Sorry about the double post, but I can see a "Who shot Mr. Burns." Like situation coming on.

crackman64
crackman64

There is a bad man every generation. Jack Thompson is the one after osamas arrest. I agree with you, mariostoadstool, and it's the same with everyone else who opposes Jack Thompson. I'm going to prey for the saving of the game industry right now.

alcarazo9
alcarazo9

because of idiots like this one people say games are bad

Iron_Knuckle666
Iron_Knuckle666

He shouldn't worry about threats he should worry about reality, how no one likes him and everyone wants him to suffer what a ****

UBCS2
UBCS2

I heard that Jack said that someone was mentally ill because he didn't agree with him. Jack over there makes us gamers look bad. People think we're a bunch of fat dumb and crazy teenage jerks playing violent games like GTA Mortal Kombat ect. all day. Well the reality is we're not fat dumb ugly and crazy and have a fetish for violent games. I myself an a healthy, in shape, smart, nice looking American citizen. I'm sick of politicians calling us crazy and violent people. I play games like Resident Evil which is violent but I am perfectly sane and don't play violent games 24/7 I play games such as Spyro, Crash ect. Hell I haven't played a game in a while and have been writing stories. I have a life which some politicans may call blasphemy. But I just wish Jack would stow it(I bet he didn't get much attention as a child). Joe Lieberman could have been focusing on more important issues than his crusade on games I think people like this Texas kid should stop making us look like garbage.

Bloodzombie77
Bloodzombie77

Looks like someone's cry for help is gonna get answered......by all of us not being able to play good games anymore.

Sheepofevilz
Sheepofevilz

"Leave idiots to their own schemes. You'll be better off for it." STOP ACKNOWLEDGING JACK THOMPSON'S EXISTANCE AND HE CAN'T DO CRAP TO ANYONE! The guy is completely irrational, inane, condescending, and a complete moron. Contacting him will only screw you in the end because he doesn't care about anything.

yrnehmada
yrnehmada

There needs to a pro-gamers lawyer to counter Jack Thompson's BS.

MasterManiac772
MasterManiac772

"Messenger." Here we go with this "holy Crusades" nonsense again. Am I the only one getting sick of this moron? This man makes a living out of letting criminals run free, and this is the best thing he can do to make himself look better?

UltimatumCHIEF
UltimatumCHIEF

If Jack Thompson made a 6-10 year old kid go to jail for threating him then i am f*cking shocked, i wonder what NEXT ?

striker121
striker121

Doesn't Jack realize he's just making the kids of America who play viedo games(around 89% of them) hate him and even if his laws were passed then when kids like me are older we'll eventually find a way to reverse those laws because we know the truth. Viedo games don't make people kill other people anger and racism does.

Swords_Rose_86
Swords_Rose_86

Anyone notice that he's referring to himself in the third person? Sorry if that's already been pointed out.

CleptoPots
CleptoPots

Stupid kid... Retards like that give the rest of us a bad name. And that moron Thompson is going to use this as ammo against the games industry, isn't he? Of course he is... Pathetic...

Striker-F0x
Striker-F0x

For f***s sake....*smells more s*** coming...*

AznDestoryer2
AznDestoryer2

That will be bad if Jack Thompson made a 6-10 year old kid go to jail for threating him, THAT IS WORSE THAN TRYING TO SCREW UP THE INDUSTRY, PLUS, THE TEEN IS DUMB FOR TELLING THAT, THANKS MORON, YOU GAVE THOMPSON MORE POWER TO END VIDEO GAMES FOREVER. LETS HOPE THE GAMING INDUSTRY WILL OVERPOWER CLINTON, THOMPSON, NIMF, LEE, AND ALL PEOPLE WHO THINK THAT GAMES MUST BE CENSORED OR BANNED.

digimonkey
digimonkey

"'Shoot the messenger' is the video game industry's strategy," Thompson wrote. "This time, because of the arrest in Texas, it didn't work. It backfired. What the heck does Thompson mean by this? It was a 16 year old kid messing around on the internet, not the President of EA. Okay, death threats are nothing to laugh about, but do you really need to press charges for something this unsolicited? The kid had no way to back up these threats. And why would he open his mouth when he knows how touchy Thompson is? Geez. Neither of these idiots have any sense at all.

zymase
zymase

Ignore Thompson, and he will go away. Pull crap like this, and he'll keep making his pathetic little arguments against everything we all hold dear.

trisjules
trisjules

My god. You put a 16 year old in Jail man. Good job. His plan really "backfired", didn't it? The thing I don't want to think about (or can't believe) is that JT probably thinks that getting a poor 16 year old nutjob arrested is a victory, and that we have all been sent a warning. You know, as prepatrators of the of the murder simulators known as entertainment or recreation at most. Hell, I wanna know what kind of murder Animal Crossing creates and trains. I friggin love that game..... -T

bmo999
bmo999

This kid is just fuel on Thompson's fire.

SoulDigger
SoulDigger

Look i hate thompson just as much as the next guy and this kid well he was stupid in threatning the guy, but regardless thompson doesnt have any rite 2 censor any game. The guys the biggest loser all he does is sit their and complain about "violence" in "video games" and then he points his finger at the wrong ppl. And the kids who say that games are to blame for their actions are the 1's who shouldnt be allowed to play games and then were the gamers who get screwed over.

Fathrim
Fathrim

Oh great, thanks a lot kid, just help out Jack even more. )=

videogamr49
videogamr49

Thompson is really a jerk at hating games. I PROBABLY would have done the same thing...but I hate prison food...

dossaer
dossaer

It will all pass. Does anyone really think that Mr Thompson's crusade will have any bearing on a multi billion dollar industry? Whacko people like this have always tried to censor movies and music and it only serves to raise an eyebrow or two for a while and then it all goes away. In the end we all get desensitised. Does anyone remember Doom being scary? Or when the A Clock Work Orange got banned? Entertainment; movies, t.v., games and music are growing together as an industry. This is not a force that the minorities will control. So... Don't worry about Thompson or the twit that threatened him, they'll both fade into obscurity by... look they already have :)

Anthonybdfg
Anthonybdfg

that loser need to be kick from every video game out there

Anthonybdfg
Anthonybdfg

that loser need to be kick from every vodeo game out there

Funkyhamster
Funkyhamster

Some people just don't know when to keep their mouth shut.

FreakShow2191
FreakShow2191

Gee thanks alot, now theres ANOTHER thing Thompson will blame on the industry....

Chronixxxx
Chronixxxx

Someone please shut Thompson up. The gamers of the world will keep fighting him until he does.

Raziel151
Raziel151

I wonder why the games are always the first to be targeted? I mean, aren't movies as violent as this, sometimes more? We even get stuff like this in daily news. Also, games have to get their ideas from somewhere, don't they? American games aren't violent per se, the violence comes from the country itself, in most cases. Game developers only depict it. Also, the fact that a violent game stays longer in the minds of people such as our "friend" Jack is different from the news. These tend to be thought about less (unless it's things like 9/11), but games are viewed and played by millions of people across the world and have a much longer life span. News come and go, but games stay. Jack should consider stopping Bush's war mongering before anything. *Yes, I know, many of the comments I passed are anti-American (I'm Canadian). If it bothers you, gimme your best shot in return.

chrisdojo
chrisdojo

i LOL at teh 16 yr old gangsta..... go get em tiger!

Miltonelite
Miltonelite

Way to go JT... you managed to pick on a 16 year old, who probably didnt really even threaten you in the first place...That makes you a big hero (or is that moron I can't remember)...Btw that still has nothing to do with videogames... I think your just Old, Stupid, and Confused. Maybe a little psycho too.

orvenguy
orvenguy

DAT NABIT! Kids needs to shut their traps for sometime and act like goody-two-shoed citizens so Mr. Thompson would shut his own...

Soiram
Soiram

"The threshold for accepting charges or declining them is whether or not the complainant was in fear for his life," "not whether or not the complainant had the ability to carry it out. But just making threats would be an offense in itself." So if i say f()*^_)(*ck you to smone im goin to jail.........Cmon what are we... stupid?????? Back to the basic lads..... its called COMMON SENSE.

easteast
easteast

No one wants to have the things they like posted as "encouraging violence towards everyone" which is why I think Jack Thompson should take a break from criticisizing everything and just vent for a while.

koopakid
koopakid

I hate JT, lets fart on his moma

vaejas
vaejas

*sigh* Guess the kid wanted to add "Been there, done that," to "bought the T-shirt." Welcome to real life son. There's no Reset button, it's called consequences. Wanna make a real difference? Grow up and become a better lawyer.

Huntress
Huntress

Man, what an idiot. Wasn't it obvious to him that anti-game knuckleheads would only trumpet about how this proves their point? Yeesh.

NeoJedi
NeoJedi

Yeah good job there kid... Jack had been leaving us gamers alone for a while and now this dumbass goes and does this. Bravo.

Aragorn33
Aragorn33

Damn, just giving us gamers a bad name. Give Jack more crap to complain about. He has mental issues, and threatening him isn't going to help, guys.