Pokemon World Championships Gunmen Denied Bail
The two men arrested for making threats of violence at the Pokemon World Championships and showing up to the event with guns have been denied bail by a Boston Municipal Court Judge.
According to the Associated Press, 18-year-old Kevin Norton and 27-year-old James Stumbo have been denied bail after a Judge Thomas Horgan rejected their lawyers' arguments that the two men's threats to cause mass violence at the Pokemon World Champions was just false bravado. Norton and Stumbo, both from Iowa, showed up to the Pokemon World Championships in Boston last month with an assault rifle and a shotgun in their car and tried to register in order to gain access to the venue. Stumbo previously posted a picture on Facebook of Norton's car with their guns on top of it and the caption "Kevin Norton and I are ready for worlds Boston here we come!!!"
The two men had an AR-15 assault rifle, a 12-gauge Remington shotgun, a knife and roughly 300 rounds of ammunition in their car when they showed up to the John B. Hynes Veterans Memorial Convention Center for the Pokemon World Championships. The two left their weapons in the car and went to the venue to register (both men were Pokemon players who legitimately qualified to enter). Luckily, Stumbo's Facebook post was previously reported and the security team was alerted to the duo's threats. Police then arrived at the scene and apprehended both men after they failed to provide carrying licenses for their firearms.
Boston PD detective James Simpson revealed that the duo's chatroom conversations with other people made references to the Boston Marathon bombings, the Boston Massacre of 1770 and the Columbine High School massacre. Stumbo's lawyer claims that this was just "vague bravado talk" and "this is just the way they all spoke to each other." Norton also threatened to shoot an online moderator when he found him at the Boston championships.
"This wasn't just kid talk on the computer," Judge Horgan said.
"It's a different scenario than idle chitchat on a Facebook or Twitter account," Assistant District Attorney Joseph Janezic said, citing that the two men drove 25 hours to Boston with guns and ammo in their car after making serious online threats. "You're one step away from carrying those out."
Stumbo's lawyer, Steven Goldwyn, is trying to file a motion to dismiss the charges of illegal possession of guns and ammunition. The Assistant District Attorney said the investigation continues to determine whether this was a "cyberbulling or a mass casualty" situation.
Considering they were likely planning to do widespread harm at a Pokemon event, which attracts large numbers of children and younger gamers, I seriously hope these two men get the book thrown at them.
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