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Several incidents speculated to be related to video games in recent decades have helped fuel controversy.
- On April 20, 1999, 18-year-old Eric Harris and 17-year-old Dylan Klebold killed 12 students and a teacher in the Columbine High School massacre. The two were allegedly obsessed with the video game Doom. Harris also created WADs for the game, and created a large mod named "Tier" which he called his "life's work". Contrary to certain rumours, however, neither student had made a Doom level mimicking the school layout, and there is no evidence the pair practiced the massacre in Doom.
- In November 2001, 21-year-old American Shawn Woolley committed suicide after what his mother claimed was an addiction to EverQuest. Woolley's mother stated, "I think the way the game is written is that when you first start playing it, it is fun, and you make great accomplishments. And then the further you get into it, the higher level you get, the longer you have to stay on it to move onward, and then it isn't fun anymore. But by then you're addicted, and you can't leave it."
- In February, 2003, 16-year-old American Dustin Lynch was charged with aggravated murder and made an insanity defense that he was "obsessed" with Grand Theft Auto III. Long time video game opponent and former attorney Jack Thompson encouraged the father of victim JoLynn Mishne to pass a note to the judge that said "the attorneys had better tell the jury about the violent video game that trained this kid [and] showed him how to kill our daughter, JoLynn. If they don't, I will." Lynch later retracted his insanity plea, and his mother Jerrilyn Thomas commented, "It has nothing to do with video games or Paxil, and my son's no murderer."
- On June 7, 2003, 18-year-old American Devin Moore shot and killed two policemen and a dispatcher after grabbing one of the officers' weapons following an arrest for the possession of a stolen vehicle. At trial, the defense claimed that Moore had been inspired by the video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.
- On June 25, 2003, two American step brothers, Joshua and William Buckner, aged 14 and 16, respectively, used a rifle to fire at vehicles on Interstate 40 in Tennessee, killing a 45-year-old man and wounding a 19-year-old woman. The two shooters told investigators they had been inspired by Grand Theft Auto III.
- On February 27, 2004 in Leicester, UK, 17-year-old Warren Leblanc lured 14-year-old Stefan Pakeerah into a park and murdered him by stabbing him repeatedly with a claw hammer and knife. Leblanc was reportedly obsessed with Manhunt, although investigation quickly revealed that the killer did not even own a copy of the game. The victim's mother Giselle Pakeerah has been campaigning against violent video games in the UK ever since. The police investigating the case have dismissed any link, as discussed in the relevant articles.
- In October 2004, a 41-year-old Chinese man named Qiu Chengwei stabbed 26-year-old Zhu Caoyuan to death over a dispute regarding the sale of a virtual weapon the two had jointly won in the game The Legend of Mir 3.
- In August 2005, 28-year-old South Korean Lee Seung Seop died after playing StarCraft for 50 hours straight.
- In September 2007, a Chinese man in Guangzhou, China, died after playing Internet video games for three consecutive days in an Internet cafe.
- In December 2007, a Russian man was beaten to death over an argument in the MMORPG Lineage II. The man was killed when his guild and a rival guild challenged each other to a brawl in the real world.
- On October 13, 2008, 15-year-old Brandon Crisp from Barrie, Ontario, Canada ran away from home on his mountain bike after his parents confiscated his Xbox 360 following an argument regarding the time he spent playing Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. His body, which had fallen from a tree, was found on November 5, 2008 by some local hunters.
- In September 2007 in Ohio, 16 year old Daniel Petric, snuck out of his bedroom window to purchase the game Halo 3 against the orders of his father, a minister at New Life Assembly of God in Wellington, Ohio. His parents eventually banned him from the game after he spent up to 18 hours a day with it, and secured it in a lockbox in a closet where the father also kept a 9 mm handgun, according to prosecutors. In October 2007, Daniel used his father's key to open the lockbox and remove the gun and the game. He then entered the living room of his house and shot both of them in the head, killing his mother and wounding his father. Petric now faces up a maximum sentence of life in prison without parole. While defense attorneys argued that Petric was influenced by video game addiction, the court fully dismissed these claims.
- False reports initially claimed that Seung-Hui Cho, the killer in the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre was an avid Counter-Strike player. However, police reports said that roommates of Cho had never seen him play any video games. Despite these discoveries, disbarred attorney Jack Thompson continued to erroneously claim that video games were to blame.
- Controversy of speeding and evading the authority in racing games surfaced when a copy of Need for Speed: Most Wanted was found on one of the street racers' car in Toronto in January 19, 2006, when two 18-year-olds, Alexander Ryazanov and Wang-Piao Dumani Rossracers, were involved in an accident resulting the death of taxi-driver Tahir Khan. Nevertheless, the police did not find any connection between the game and the incident.
- In June 2008, four teens went on a crime spree after being obsessed with Grand Theft Auto IV in New Hyde Park, New York. They first robbed a man, knocking his teeth out and then they stopped a woman driving a black BMW and stole her cigarettes and her car.
Isn't it weird how they all are so into the game they dos stuff in real life. I bet you everyone on this list has a low IQ and has a mental disease. Blaming deaths on video games is like saying that if you sell someone a gun (legally) and he kills someone with it, you're the one who killed them.