Texas teen jailed after League of Legends argument

In-game dispute led to Facebook comments from 18-year-old referencing school shooting.

A Texas teenager has been jailed since March 27 over comments he made on Facebook after playing a League of Legends match. In February, an argument 18-year-old Justin Carter had with another League of Legends player spilled onto Facebook, where Carter made a comment referencing a school shooting.

“Someone had said something to the effect of 'Oh you're insane, you're crazy, you're messed up in the head,’" his father Jack Carter told Texas news station KVUE. "To which he replied 'Oh yeah, I'm real messed up in the head, I'm going to go shoot up a school full of kids and eat their still, beating hearts,’ and the next two lines were lol and JK."

Jack Carter said a woman from Canada saw the posting, did a Google search for his addresses and when she noticed he lived near a school, called the police. Justin Carter was later arrested and charged with making a terrorist threat.

Justin Carter faces eight years in prison, his father said, arguing that his son's comments were sarcastic. “These people are serious. They really want my son to go away to jail for a sarcastic comment that he made," Jack Carter said.

Justin Carter's comments came just months after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, where 20 children and six adults were killed. Jack Carter said his son did not pay much attention to current events.

“Justin was the kind of kid who didn't read the newspaper. He didn't watch television. He wasn't aware of current events. These kids, they don't realize what they're doing. They don't understand the implications," Jack Carter said. "They don't understand public space."

Family and friends have launched an online petition asking for Justin Carter's release and a rollback of certain anti-terrorism laws and investigatory practices.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Did you enjoy this article?

Sign In to Upvote

eddienoteddy

Eddie Makuch

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.
League of Legends

League of Legends

Follow
1677 comments
AZE160
AZE160

I've seen documentaries about Sending kids to Juvy or other correctionals for like mostly the smallest things, mostly in Texas and Indiana. This isn't a surprise but i would hope that someone gets out of this idiocracy of Justice on Minors

Salanderr
Salanderr

Kid looks like an idiot, and his comment was pathetic, but nothing worth a jail sentence. 

emgesp
emgesp

8 years for making a tasteless joke. This country is so retarded. I need to move to Canada before this country goes straight into the pooper. 

Szeiden
Szeiden

@emgesp Lol you're an idiot. The woman who caused this mess in the first place was Canadian. 

MusclesJAM
MusclesJAM

See this is an example of common sense getting thrown out the window.

Usually I don't feel bad for people saying insensitive shit right after a serious event, especially if it can be taken as a threat.  But seriously, who in their right mind would not be able to tell that the statement he made was sarcastic?  Everything from the original comment leading up to it, the absolute absurdity of eating their hearts out, and of course, followed by "lol" or "j/k"

If you think that was a genuine threat I think you're a bit paranoid.

cimpeanradu
cimpeanradu

America, the land where you have the freedom to do as you are told.

gameguy182
gameguy182

This is pretty crazy. What was that kid thinking!? I don't know how I feel about any of this at all. Although I definitely don't think he should go to jail for 9 years thats for sure.

MateykoSlam
MateykoSlam

@gameguy182 i'ts a joke moron don't you understand. i will find you kill you and your mother and eat your guts. people like you make me feel ill

slim1379
slim1379

agree or don't, fear the government  all you want, i love wearing a tin foil hat much the next guy,  but "WITHOUT CONTROL" their can't be order...

 spout freedom all you want but their has too be a point were your not free too say, i don't know "i WILL KILL" 

we keep wanting police too save are children, but when someone make a comment legit or not, that could be deem a threat were overreacting? 

maybe someone does need too be the Marty for their too be change or have are kids "since sympathizers  thinks he is one" too grow up.


their can only be 2 options complete freedom, were we police are self or

 a world were your not free too do/say whatever you please an order stands 


people believe in their freedom too much too the point they feel they have power over society or just too ignorant too try understand why their been judge


DESTROYRS_F8
DESTROYRS_F8

...and yet kids get away with antisemitic remarks, bullying, and racial insults on XBL.

joeboosauce
joeboosauce

This is the thought police in action. No sarcasm allowed on the net! Terrorism has been used and abused by the gov't to expand their powers to monitor US citizens and the rest of the world. This case is an example of how "terrorism" is used to criminalize all sorts of NON-terrorist behavior and beliefs. Rule through fear has become the MO of the US gov't and sadly it works on a good chunk of Americans. Usually, the old, uneducated, and the already fearful.

Plataea
Plataea

That was a shockingly insensitive statement for the teen to make, but it's obvious that it was intended as a joke, albeit in exceptionally bad taste.  It may be reasonable for the police to investigate the comment, but it's absurd for the teen to spend years in prison over a statement.

frylock1987
frylock1987

Sorry but, joke or no joke. If my son said he was gonna shoot up a school because he was pissed off over a game, I would beat the fucking piss out of him and then go on to break his PC in front of him so he can't play games anymore until he gets up 700$ of his own money to get a new computer.


sorry but. The dude was acting like a massive little bitch over a game.  Not every single human being is the same and shares the same genetic structure and mind set as this guy, so it would make sense for certain people like...lets say....someone with kids for example, not liking this dummy's poor joke and being a little offended by it.


lets not forgot its been a wonderful year in the US when it comes to School Shootings....you know, the thing everyone on here was bitching about and saying some people need to have their fully automatic guns taken away, even though they never fired a gun before in their life, let alone held one.

FakeMythology
FakeMythology

Its an exception not a rule and he still has to go to court where he will almost certainly win and then he may turn around and sue these massive pricks for emotional damages and court expenses and chuckle as he bankrupts these people


SpikeSpeagal
SpikeSpeagal

Heh the stupidity of whats happening to this kid is unbelievable. If were to be held accountable for every sarcastic, dim witted, or rage train comment we make on the internet,

Almost all of us are going to be serving a lot of time behind bars, myself included.

ajthelegend
ajthelegend

Amazing how numerous people consider what this 19 year old said was a "Joke", unless you have inside knowledge on what this person was thinking how could such a statement be considered written with humorous intentions? Before the how do you know comments come out know that I have no clue what the individuals intentions were by making the statement however, there is a bigger picture here which it seems many people are either refusing to acknowledge or are not thinking about. Playing or not statements which can be deemed a "Threat" have to be taken seriously especially in the day and age we live in, what would the comments be had this person not been reported and he actually followed through with what he stated? While I will not completely blame the parents, it seems they do not understand the serious nature of what their son has stated and want it to be treated as a boys will be boys situation however, for better or worse those days are over people. Hopefully the 19 year old does not spend the entire time (especially if he did not mean any harm) however, hopefully he has learned a valuable lesson and maybe this will make others think in the future of what they are saying/writing before making the statement.

garrybubba
garrybubba

What ever happened to common sense, of course he wasn't being serious.

RivalRick
RivalRick

I don't know about anyone else here, but I've been threatened with various violent/sexual/insane acts in my years over the internet, and I haven't batted an eye at any of it. There is a great line between trash-talking and empty threats, and actually planning a violent act.

rbereczki
rbereczki

@xMat7x I think someone had already pointed out to you that the line I used was quoted from the South Park movie. But regardless, I can hate on Canada because I lived there for long enough to know that it's a fucked up country. I moved away and renounced my citizenship and I'm happier for it. But you go on and enjoy yourself, until some Canadian bitch calls the cops on you for something innocent. This story is not the first time I hear of some Canadian douchebag overreacting to something they don't understand and causing trouble.

TickTock9630
TickTock9630

America and its "freedom of speech" !! 

Don't you just love it  !

ck10304
ck10304

This is fucking ridiculous. America is so obsessed with imprisoning it's own citizens, not to mention citizens of other countries. Something like a quarter of the entire world's prison population is in the States

TomoEK9
TomoEK9

Everything about this story sounds absolutely stupid. From his comments, to someone from another country being offended, to googling his address, to the punishment itself.

Granted what he said was in bad taste, it was said jokingly. I agree he should be punished for being that stupid, but 8 years in jail is a bit extreme to drive that point across.

unam10122
unam10122

how the hell can you use google to find  a stranger's adresses 

SNESNOSTALGIA2
SNESNOSTALGIA2

I have no idea. His explanation was extremely convoluted. Something about syncing my PSN name to my system to check when I originally purchased it. I felt borderline violated and creeped out that he took it that far. He said such insane BS I was shocked...I've since seen his name pop up here and there starting fanboy arguments with people for no reason LOL some people forget they're games.

chibi-acer
chibi-acer

I get that comments like these are serious business, but really, to go forward with charging him for up to 8 years in prison?  Arrest the kid, do your investigation, realize that he's a moron, then let him go, maybe with fine.  That this is continuing to move forward is stupid beyond comprehension.

I guess the district attorney has never been on the Internet before.  Don't let him/her see user comments on news posts!  The prisons will be overflowing by Sunday!

Metalnoid
Metalnoid

This is like Minority Report!! Jailed for a post? "Terrorist Threat"? I think is too much!

Hellmarchx
Hellmarchx

this is why u dont post your own dam address on the internet LMAO

scatterbrain007
scatterbrain007

Jailed? Really?  The kid just needs a good yelling at.  His parents should probably teach him to keep up with current events a little more as well.  Just take his computer away for a while and give him a few extra chores around the house, and he'll be fine.  Although it will probably get the job done, jail time for a facebook comment like that is a bit extreme.

Marky360
Marky360

Honestly this is ridiculous. Some dumb random bitch from Canada(really great)stumbles over this kids little argument and takes his comments seriously and phones the police next thing you know we got a kid locked up in jail over some dumb Internet post. If this bitch had I don't know done something constructive like mind her damn business this situation wouldn't exist. Someone please tell this dumb bitch not to look at the comment section under neath Yourube videos otherwise she'll be on the phone with the police for the rest of her life LOL. This honestly has to be the dumbest thing I've ever seen and I seriously hope this kids parents get him out of this situation and then they should go ahead and delete his Facebook page and take his computer because his comments were pretty stupid but the whole situation was definitely blown out of proportion.

ANIMAL001
ANIMAL001

this crap is just batshit insane he deserves at most a punishment from his parents.

i mean i get it that they would investigate the kid but jailing him? everyone is free to be an asshole ffs

StephenSays
StephenSays

Narcissistic society where everyone makes comments on any and everything.

No one ever wants to be held responsible for what they said.

NO he doesn't deserve jail time, but watch your mouth when on social media. 

Canada is always listening. 

I learned that Canada is code for big brother.

xMat7x
xMat7x

Why the hell are you idiots blaming Canada? One f*cking woman, yet you blame an entire country. Always looking for a way to insult Canada. What if it had been the other way around. People wouldn't have been blaming the ENTIRE country of U.S. Get your heads out of your asses.

fredwv
fredwv

League of Legend is serious business.  

Oozyrat
Oozyrat

I actually just started playing LoL (a few days ago) for something to do while waiting for the next gen and so far everyone's been very nice on there. If someone says they're a new player usually someone offers to get their back and assist them. Either way I'm pretty impressed with the game so far and it's definitely something to do until the new stuff hits.

MrHatnClogs
MrHatnClogs

Somewhere in Canada, a poor husband isn't getting a sammich because his wife is busy on the internet.


DAOWAce
DAOWAce

Welp, in the land of illusionary freedom and constant surveillance and privacy invasion without our consent (or even knowledge), it's not that surprising that sarcasm is now classified as terrorism.

Christ, I need to get out of this country.

vitari
vitari

First I want to say, I think he should be able to meet his accuser. What was this woman doing? Searching for young men? She sounds creepy. Why are Canadians calling the cops on Texans?

Now while I agree it's stupid and he won't see any jail time, people need to stop saying 'kid'. He's 18 and that's a grown man. Men that break the law have to held accountable for their actions.

lilnazar
lilnazar

I'd seriously slap that old hag.

Krauklis
Krauklis

The US justice system should be ashamed things have come this far, take back your country from the fearmongers. Of course the real reason this is happening are private prisons, who lobby for stricter term for nonviolent crimes so they could turn a bigger and safer profit.

Aaronp2k
Aaronp2k

I want to know who that woman was who called the police, because she obviously has nothing better to do than ruin peoples lives. what a bitch