Facebook Gamer Who Let Son Drown Gets 10 Years

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Facebook Gamer Who Let Son Drown Gets 10 Years

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It shouldn't surprise anyone to learn that letting your kid drown while you play Facebook games will net you ten years in prison.

Last September, a Colorado woman' thirteen-month-old son drowned in a bathtub while she was playing a Facebook game. Since then, she plead guilty to the charges filed against her and has just been sentenced. Her punishment? Ten years in prison.

Shannon Johnson, 34, claims that she didn't want her son, Joseph, to grow up as a "mama's boy" and was an "independent" toddler who didn't need adult supervision. As a result, she put him in his bath and then left him alone so she could start up her PC in the other room and play Café World on Facebook. When she returned "about ten minutes" later, she found Joseph drowning and making gurgling noises. When Johnson called 911, EMS workers managed to get the child airlifted to a local hospital, but doctors weren't able to save him.

Johnson has accepted responsibility for her actions, which she described as "so stupid", and isn't trying to blame the game in some way so she can try to wriggle out of trouble. Last month, she entered a guilty plea for negligent child abuse ending in death; but when she was handed a sentence of ten years in prison, she tried to soften penalty by appealing to the judge:

"I know I made a huge mistake leaving him unattended, and for that I will always hate myself. There has been [sic] four infant-toddler drownings in Colorado, since January 1. Every time I hear of one, it's like rubbing salt into a wound. I want to reach out to people and want people to learn from my mistake, and I don't want others to walk a mile in my shoes."

Johnson's words had no affect on the sentencing. She's still facing ten years in prison with another five years of mandatory parole after she's released.

There are way too many of these kinds of stories these days, meaning that there's more than zero. They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm sure this isn't the last story I'll write on this topic.

Source: Westword, Geek

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I knew it!
FACEBOOK IS GONNA BE THE END OF US ALL!

vansau:

There are way too many of these kinds of stories these days, meaning that there's more than zero. They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm not holding my breath.

Personally, I'd be happier if the woman wasn't described as "Facebook Gamer", which is just a preference, and rather as "Cold Hearted Bitch" - which is more of a reason.

HOLY SHIT IT'S THE MONSTER!
image

Well, at least she took responsibility for her Son's death.
That's better than blaming a peice of shit cooking simulator.

At least she isn't blaming games for her problems, like so many others seem to do in these tragic situations.
Still, there's no real happy ending possible for a story like this.

vansau:
They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm not holding my breath.

This last sentence seems oddly inappropriate considering it's about somebody drowning, is the Escapist dabbling in darker humour or was that just overlooked?

The_root_of_all_evil:

vansau:

There are way too many of these kinds of stories these days, meaning that there's more than zero. They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm not holding my breath.

Personally, I'd be happier if the woman wasn't described as "Facebook Gamer", which is just a preference, and rather as "Cold Hearted Bitch" - which is more of a reason.

I do have to agree with you that she's a cold hearted bitch for letting her son drown while she played video games. On the other hand, I have to tip my hat for her not screaming about that video game and how addictive it is and how it wasn't her fault.

In the long run, it doesn't excuse her actions at all

The_root_of_all_evil:

vansau:

There are way too many of these kinds of stories these days, meaning that there's more than zero. They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm not holding my breath.

Personally, I'd be happier if the woman wasn't described as "Facebook Gamer", which is just a preference, and rather as "Cold Hearted Bitch" - which is more of a reason.

Exactly. If she herself isn't blaming or even mentioning the game, why are we calling her a gamer? If she had been ironing shirts in the other room while the kid drowned, would the headline be "Shirt Ironing Woman Who Let Son Drown Gets 10 Years"?

She's not a cold hearted bitch. Just a dumb parent, and those aren't exactly rare. This getting coverage because a game is somehow involved is sickening. It's exactly - exactly - like the fun times we used to have with Jack Thompson: confusing correlation with causation and damaging the image of gamers in the eyes of the non-gaming public.

Wow only in america eh, and such a crap game as well.

and they say FPS,s kill people!

Independent toddler is an oxymoron, in that anyone who believes there is such a thing, is a moron. CASE IN POINT

Legion:

vansau:
They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm not holding my breath.

This last sentence seems oddly inappropriate considering it's about somebody drowning, is the Escapist dabbling in darker humour or was that just overlooked?

That was just overlooked. I'll change it.

Legion:

vansau:
They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm not holding my breath.

This last sentence seems oddly inappropriate considering it's about somebody drowning, is the Escapist dabbling in darker humour or was that just overlooked?

I think it's overlooked. A LOT of articles in the escapist end with that line.

Tzekelkan:

The_root_of_all_evil:

vansau:

There are way too many of these kinds of stories these days, meaning that there's more than zero. They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm not holding my breath.

Personally, I'd be happier if the woman wasn't described as "Facebook Gamer", which is just a preference, and rather as "Cold Hearted Bitch" - which is more of a reason.

Exactly. If she herself isn't blaming or even mentioning the game, why are we calling her a gamer? If she had been ironing shirts in the other room while the kid drowned, would the headline be "Shirt Ironing Woman Who Let Son Drown Gets 10 Years"?

She's not a cold hearted bitch. Just a dumb parent, and those aren't exactly rare. This getting coverage because a game is somehow involved is sickening. It's exactly - exactly - like the fun times we used to have with Jack Thompson: confusing correlation with causation and damaging the image of gamers in the eyes of the non-gaming public.

Personally I find the cold hearted bitch statement is more because she thought she was gonna turn her son into a mama's boy by spending just enough time to wash him in a bath tub.

Cuddling him all the time, not letting him do ANYTHING by themselves (notice the word dangerous isn't included), such things turn your son into a mama's boy, and even then not with a 100% effective rate. Not taking the time to wash your son is just careless parenting.

vansau:

Legion:

vansau:
They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm not holding my breath.

This last sentence seems oddly inappropriate considering it's about somebody drowning, is the Escapist dabbling in darker humour or was that just overlooked?

That was just overlooked. I'll change it.

Fair enough, I wasn't offended at all, I just thought I'd point it out as some people may have taken it for humour, I didn't want people to start getting accusatory over it.

vansau:

Legion:

vansau:
They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm not holding my breath.

This last sentence seems oddly inappropriate considering it's about somebody drowning, is the Escapist dabbling in darker humour or was that just overlooked?

That was just overlooked. I'll change it.

No, don´t do that, it was kind of funny! Dammit.

OT: I´m going to wrap up my opinion with three words: "What a bitch/idiot."

Good redence let the bitch rot in prison she duesnt deserve anything.

CAPTCHA: Mengl's Offich
Da Fuck is that even mean

llamaquest101:
Wow only in america eh, and such a crap game as well.

Don't be so sure - it's not like we've never had anything similar in the UK.
As said above, the only standout feature of this case is that she was distracted by a game, rather than a TV programme, crossword, randy milkman, or whatever.

This is tragic, but I find it hard to feel mad at this woman because it seemed like more of a casual accident than because of complete and utter negligence. It's not like her son starved to death because she'd been playing WoW for 72 straight hours.

What I find to be even worse is the fact that she's got 10 years for this, while someone who kills someone deliberately (or maybe under the influence of some kind of substance) only gets a couple of months to a couple of years.

It's very tragic :<

But common sense says that toddlers HAVE to be mamma's boys. I understand the need to not want to be over protective but... christ, I was an idiot till I was 21 years of age, perhaps still one.

I do feel sorry for her, even though it's her fault. Must be horrible losing your own child :<

Wasnt there a VERY similar story like this involving a WoW addict in england?

Wtf is wrong with the world...

I love how the actual "gaming" part of this story is actually tangential to the problem.

Problem: She thought toddlers could be "independent".

Facebook doesn't really enter into it

This is a very sad story.

Stammer:
This is tragic, but I find it hard to feel mad at this woman because it seemed like more of a casual accident than because of complete and utter negligence. It's not like her son starved to death because she'd been playing WoW for 72 straight hours.

What I find to be even worse is the fact that she's got 10 years for this, while someone who kills someone deliberately (or maybe under the influence of some kind of substance) only gets a couple of months to a couple of years.

Thirteen month olds should never be left alone, let alone when they are in the bathtub.

I'm unsure what the "usual" sentence is for this, but ten years does seem like a long sentence since I'm sure the guilt alone is enough to ruin this woman's life.

But again, no thirteen month old is independent. Truly negligent parenting and if she has any older children it's a miracle they survived so long.

llamaquest101:
Wow only in america eh, and such a crap game as well.

Dude, this stuff happens EVERYWHERE

Celtic_Kerr:

Tzekelkan:

The_root_of_all_evil:

Personally, I'd be happier if the woman wasn't described as "Facebook Gamer", which is just a preference, and rather as "Cold Hearted Bitch" - which is more of a reason.

Exactly. If she herself isn't blaming or even mentioning the game, why are we calling her a gamer? If she had been ironing shirts in the other room while the kid drowned, would the headline be "Shirt Ironing Woman Who Let Son Drown Gets 10 Years"?

She's not a cold hearted bitch. Just a dumb parent, and those aren't exactly rare. This getting coverage because a game is somehow involved is sickening. It's exactly - exactly - like the fun times we used to have with Jack Thompson: confusing correlation with causation and damaging the image of gamers in the eyes of the non-gaming public.

Personally I find the cold hearted bitch statement is more because she thought she was gonna turn her son into a mama's boy by spending just enough time to wash him in a bath tub.

Cuddling him all the time, not letting him do ANYTHING by themselves (notice the word dangerous isn't included), such things turn your son into a mama's boy, and even then not with a 100% effective rate. Not taking the time to wash your son is just careless parenting.

Well, whatever you call her, whether it's bitch, idiot or dumb, we agree: what she did was stupid.

Nevertheless, I will stress that video games had nothing to do with it and all the comments saying "oh, it was over a shit game too", "haha, looks like it's not fps that kill people", "zynga is evil" are perpetuating a negative stereotype that we're fighting so hard to abolish. We wouldn't even be hearing about this crap (which, unfortunately, happens every fucking day but it's [thankfully, could you imagine only seeing this kind of stuff in the news?] not deemed news-worthy) if the chick went to a quikie yoga session inbetween neglecting her offspring.


The resemblance!

On one hand I'm happy that facebook games get more negative attention, but on the other hand I feel sorry for the kid :(

Um sorry, but how the hell did a kid drown in a bath tub?

vansau:
Shannon Johnson, 34, claims that she didn't want her son, Joseph, to grow up as a "mama's boy" and was an "independent" toddler who didn't need adult supervision.

What a bullshit excuse for manslaughter.

Forgive me for sounding heartless.

But.

It strikes me as incredibly ironic that violent games in kids hands cause so much furore, yet apparently innocent 'social' games are the ones causing actual, confirmable deaths (admittedly only when mixed with stupid people). These stories are becoming slowly more regular, no doubt even more so as internet gaming steadily spreads out of geekdom and into real life.

northman:

Stammer:
This is tragic, but I find it hard to feel mad at this woman because it seemed like more of a casual accident than because of complete and utter negligence. It's not like her son starved to death because she'd been playing WoW for 72 straight hours.

What I find to be even worse is the fact that she's got 10 years for this, while someone who kills someone deliberately (or maybe under the influence of some kind of substance) only gets a couple of months to a couple of years.

Thirteen month olds should never be left alone, let alone when they are in the bathtub.

I'm unsure what the "usual" sentence is for this, but ten years does seem like a long sentence since I'm sure the guilt alone is enough to ruin this woman's life.

But again, no thirteen month old is independent. Truly negligent parenting and if she has any older children it's a miracle they survived so long.

I just remembered a story I heard today on the radio (can't find it on the web): a kid falling off a balcony here in Brussels because the parents left the balcony door half-open and the child unsupervised for a few minutes. All it takes is a few minutes and boom, your life is ruined.

I don't know if 10 years in prison is a suitable sentence either... it was her own kid she killed, by accident. It's bad, but she already ruined her own life, 10 years of prison will basically kill her chance at any sort of normal life. Is that what we want? I know killing a toddler is horrific, but do more lives need to be ruined afterwards by the justice system? It's like how they say, "two wrongs don't make a right".

"Independent toddler," and "didn't need supervision," was all I needed to know...

Tzekelkan:

Celtic_Kerr:

Tzekelkan:

Exactly. If she herself isn't blaming or even mentioning the game, why are we calling her a gamer? If she had been ironing shirts in the other room while the kid drowned, would the headline be "Shirt Ironing Woman Who Let Son Drown Gets 10 Years"?

She's not a cold hearted bitch. Just a dumb parent, and those aren't exactly rare. This getting coverage because a game is somehow involved is sickening. It's exactly - exactly - like the fun times we used to have with Jack Thompson: confusing correlation with causation and damaging the image of gamers in the eyes of the non-gaming public.

Personally I find the cold hearted bitch statement is more because she thought she was gonna turn her son into a mama's boy by spending just enough time to wash him in a bath tub.

Cuddling him all the time, not letting him do ANYTHING by themselves (notice the word dangerous isn't included), such things turn your son into a mama's boy, and even then not with a 100% effective rate. Not taking the time to wash your son is just careless parenting.

Well, whatever you call her, whether it's bitch, idiot or dumb, we agree: what she did was stupid.

Nevertheless, I will stress that video games had nothing to do with it and all the comments saying "oh, it was over a shit game too", "haha, looks like it's not fps that kill people", "zynga is evil" are perpetuating a negative stereotype that we're fighting so hard to abolish. We wouldn't even be hearing about this crap (which, unfortunately, happens every fucking day but it's [thankfully, could you imagine only seeing this kind of stuff in the news?] not deemed news-worthy) if the chick went to a quikie yoga session inbetween neglecting her offspring.

They're being ironic of the fact that she's probably the ONLY person that has been convicted of child negligence while playing video games who HASN'T blamed it on the company. Everytime one of these stupid people are arrested they say "Blame Zynga" or "It wouldn't have happened if the game wasn't being so addictive".

So people are being ironic about the fact that she's actually manning up to what she's done

Tzekelkan:

The_root_of_all_evil:

vansau:

There are way too many of these kinds of stories these days, meaning that there's more than zero. They're tragic and appalling and the only good thing that might come about from them is some other parents might have a revelation that kids come before games. That said, I'm not holding my breath.

Personally, I'd be happier if the woman wasn't described as "Facebook Gamer", which is just a preference, and rather as "Cold Hearted Bitch" - which is more of a reason.

Exactly. If she herself isn't blaming or even mentioning the game, why are we calling her a gamer? If she had been ironing shirts in the other room while the kid drowned, would the headline be "Shirt Ironing Woman Who Let Son Drown Gets 10 Years"?

This story wouldn't be on this website if that was the case. Sounds like a typical case of "slow news day" to me, no offense to the mother in this story.

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