Petition to Free Jailed League of Legends Player Reaches 100,000 Sigs

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Elfgore:
This is a very complicated case for me. He without a doubt, did something incredibly stupid but... does he really deserve eight years in jail for it? Hell after that school shooting in Newtown or whatever that school was called, some kid from a neighboring school said he could do better on facebook and was arrested. He got away with a slap on a wrist from the judge and was expelled from his school. That should be this guys punishment. Give him some community service or something because this kid will be most likely murdered in prison.

What he did is not right and he deserves to be punished, but eight years in jail is to extreme.

What punishment does he deserve? Yes, the comment was in bad taste, but since when does tasteless humour warrant punishment? It's not as if he shouted 'bomb' in an airport, and only a fool could mistake his comment as a genuine threat, given the context.

This case is absolutely insane. This isn't a fight for a very normal guy who uses facebook. This is a fight for all of us who express an opinion sarcastically, and we have lost. If I were the judge on this case, I would have- if not totally thrown it out- at most ruled that he write an essay on sensitivity and poor taste. But prison time?? Good lord, how can that be described as anything but the actions of a police state?

Ok, so the kid makes some sarcastic terrorist threat, which we can all agree is stupid. This naturally warrents some kind of reaction by the government, perhaps a search of the home. That seems reasonable right? Just checking to make sure it isn't the joke he says it is?

But no, that's not good enough. Instead the police arrest him, put him into prison without a trial (what happened to innocent until proven guilty anyways?) where he has been assaulted to the point of needing protection in the form of solitary confinement. They search his home AFTER they put him in jail, and he was put in front of a judge AFTER he was put in jail. Seriously? Who in the hells thought this was a good idea?

McKinsey:

Please remind me of the last time shouting "Fire!" or "Bomb!" on the Internet led to someone being crushed under the heels of a panicked mob.

See, if not fore the "bomb joke at an airport" example, which isn't rule under the same issue, that would be an excuse.

Except, of course, the claim was that someone can say whatever they want whenever they want. Making excuses doesn't make that any truer.

Kamille Bidan:

But if this is to be treated as an exception to the First Amendment then law enforcement has a duty to treat this as they would a threat to the President.

Funny you should mention that, since there are similar cases right now dealing with just that. I think this is the second time your ignorance of current events has undercut your statements.

Could not have said it better.

And the third.

chikusho:

And... so... what makes you think I believe this is something new?

You said "no longer." That indicates that there once was, and isn't now. Did you not notice your own words? I quoted them. They're also quoted in your response.

Zachary Amaranth:

Funny you should mention that, since there are similar cases right now dealing with just that. I think this is the second time your ignorance of current events has undercut your statements.

Oh? Because you're so knowledgeable.

Zachary Amaranth:

chikusho:

And... so... what makes you think I believe this is something new?

You said "no longer." That indicates that there once was, and isn't now. Did you not notice your own words? I quoted them. They're also quoted in your response.

Well, considering how many have gone free after guilt could not be proven beyond reasonable doubt, the presumption of innocence is a very real thing. A thing which has, over time, degraded to become meaningless.
If you deny that it has ever existed, that's one thing. But if I say that "dinosaurs are no longer roaming the earth" I'm guessing you wouldn't need to point out whether or not that was a _new thing_.

The real rub here is where exactly to place the blame for what seems like a seriously over the top knee jerk reaction from authorities. My advice to those on either side of this issue is to go grab a mirror. Every time there is some catastrophe its you the public that scream cry and demand authorities be put to task for failing to prevent whatever tragedy de jour happens to be all over the front page. And then once you've screamed yourselves sick for a few weeks most of you like as not shove your collective heads back up your rectums and go back to your day to day lives, seeming to be blissfully unaware of the previous disaster, at least until the next one comes along.

Which is exactly what people are doing here. After Sandy Hook the public was demanding someone, anyone, take steps to ensure such a thing could never happen again. Even if such steps trampled the liberties of those who had not committed an actual crime. Well guess what, in this poor, though misguided and frankly rather stupid, schmuck's case that is exactly what they did. And now here you all are back again crying "How dare they do this! What a travesty of justice!".

Well tough shit I say. This is the direct result of your armchair quarterbacking and backbiting. Until you, John Q Public, are willing to get off your dead asses and get involved all the time and not just when sad events penetrate your little cocoon of self absorbed self-aggrandizement, this cycle of bullshit is just going to continue.

What the fuck? This isn't even on of those things that you can kind of see where they're coming from on.

That comment is exactly the type of thing I wouldn't be surprised to see from one of my dumb-ass, certainly not terroist activty inclined, friends. Hell, he even looks like some of them, I can picture his 14 hour+ WoW days just looking at him.

I mean, okay sure, these days it's the type of thing police can't really afford to outright ignore because because it's 'probably a joke'.

But still, worst case, the outcome should have been more like:

Step 1:

Police see comment

Step 2:

Police determine comment is likely not serious.

Step 3:

Police decide to investigate to be sure

Step 4:

Police find zero evidence of intention to carry out any such action or of any inclination to do murderous things.

Step 5:

Nothing, or a small fine as recompense for the wasted investigation, which should not have been large.

Harrowdown:

Elfgore:
This is a very complicated case for me. He without a doubt, did something incredibly stupid but... does he really deserve eight years in jail for it? Hell after that school shooting in Newtown or whatever that school was called, some kid from a neighboring school said he could do better on facebook and was arrested. He got away with a slap on a wrist from the judge and was expelled from his school. That should be this guys punishment. Give him some community service or something because this kid will be most likely murdered in prison.

What he did is not right and he deserves to be punished, but eight years in jail is to extreme.

What punishment does he deserve? Yes, the comment was in bad taste, but since when does tasteless humour warrant punishment? It's not as if he shouted 'bomb' in an airport, and only a fool could mistake his comment as a genuine threat, given the context.

If they had just arrested him for his "crime" he should have just received some community service hours to show him that every action has consequences and you need to think before you say things. But now after spending several months in jail and being attacked by other inmates he should receive no punishment and maybe even be compensated for being put through all of this. If I was in his place I would probably be suffering some pretty severe mental problems after being attacked and then locked in solitary confinement.

To be honest this whole case is fishy. A Canadian woman reporting a U.S. citizen for a crime just doesn't make any sense.

Kamille Bidan:
Oh? Because you're so knowledgeable.

Evidently I am, at least by comparison. For example, I knew that the kid here had been charged. I knew bail had been set. I knew that there were cases analogous to the ones you tried to bring up.

You didn't.

It might behoove you to not try and talk down to me when I'm the one who's taken the time to inform themself.

chikusho:

Well, considering how many have gone free after guilt could not be proven beyond reasonable doubt, the presumption of innocence is a very real thing. A thing which has, over time, degraded to become meaningless.
If you deny that it has ever existed, that's one thing. But if I say that "dinosaurs are no longer roaming the earth" I'm guessing you wouldn't need to point out whether or not that was a _new thing_.

But dinosaurs once roamed the earth, which is the key difference. Pretending that anything has actually changed here is pretty bloody ridiculous. It's not like everyone went free and then one day they held the kid or something. People have been held for ridiculous reasons through the history of the US. Including, as Kamille inadvertently brought up, joking about shooting/killing the President.

The only real change is we now have social media, where people can say stupid things on a grander scale than ever before. The right to presumed innocence hasn't really changed, and jails have been full of people presumed innocent in the past. The fact is, historically we do not treat every case evenly so this is not so much a sign of the times, but a case that got garnered a larger response.

And, since people seem to need to be reminded, I am not defending that response. They went waaaay overboard and should have dropped it when there turned out to be, you know, no evidence of any wrongdoings or plans to do such.

What I am doing is pointing out that this is not a new response, or a different response. It's a very American response.

Elfgore:

Harrowdown:

Elfgore:
This is a very complicated case for me. He without a doubt, did something incredibly stupid but... does he really deserve eight years in jail for it? Hell after that school shooting in Newtown or whatever that school was called, some kid from a neighboring school said he could do better on facebook and was arrested. He got away with a slap on a wrist from the judge and was expelled from his school. That should be this guys punishment. Give him some community service or something because this kid will be most likely murdered in prison.

What he did is not right and he deserves to be punished, but eight years in jail is to extreme.

What punishment does he deserve? Yes, the comment was in bad taste, but since when does tasteless humour warrant punishment? It's not as if he shouted 'bomb' in an airport, and only a fool could mistake his comment as a genuine threat, given the context.

If they had just arrested him for his "crime" he should have just received some community service hours to show him that every action has consequences and you need to think before you say things. But now after spending several months in jail and being attacked by other inmates he should receive no punishment and maybe even be compensated for being put through all of this. If I was in his place I would probably be suffering some pretty severe mental problems after being attacked and then locked in solitary confinement.

To be honest this whole case is fishy. A Canadian woman reporting a U.S. citizen for a crime just doesn't make any sense.

Mate, I agree that it was a dumb thing to say. My point though, is that it isn't a legal issue; the US government has no right to punish people, with jail time or community service, for saying dumb things. If it did, then the prisons would be full of comedians, and venting after a bad day at work would be a crime. Yes, it was a dumb, immature thing to say. It was not however, even remotely harmful or dangerous to anyone.

Zachary Amaranth:

But dinosaurs once roamed the earth, which is the key difference. Pretending that anything has actually changed here is pretty bloody ridiculous. It's not like everyone went free and then one day they held the kid or something. People have been held for ridiculous reasons through the history of the US. Including, as Kamille inadvertently brought up, joking about shooting/killing the President.

The only real change is we now have social media, where people can say stupid things on a grander scale than ever before. The right to presumed innocence hasn't really changed, and jails have been full of people presumed innocent in the past. The fact is, historically we do not treat every case evenly so this is not so much a sign of the times, but a case that got garnered a larger response.

And, since people seem to need to be reminded, I am not defending that response. They went waaaay overboard and should have dropped it when there turned out to be, you know, no evidence of any wrongdoings or plans to do such.

What I am doing is pointing out that this is not a new response, or a different response. It's a very American response.

I guess you have a good point. The overabundance of information is both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, people should know what injustices are being committed on a daily basis. On the other, once you see them stack up mile high it's easy to become apathetic and bitter.

fletch_talon:

Grats man, you used the word context in their somewhere. Now its time to apply it to this situation.
A woman saw a facebook post about a kid being messed up in the head and killing people. In a world (and for that matter especially a country) where this happens, more often than it should.
That seems to be the context she had. So no, the police shouldn't investigate "no matter the context". They should certainly investigate if the context is unknown.

Context is important, you seem to acknowledge that, so next time how about you put a little more thought into how it applies to this situation.

Right context. Like the fact it was followed by lol jk. Like the fact it was in response to someone calling him crazy to which he started in agreement a large indicator of sarcasm. Like the fact he used grossly exaggerated imagery that no one would actually say so as to clearly identify it as an exaggeration. Like the fact that it was said in an argument to someone else and not as a general statement. Like the fact no other threat was made and further no other writing such as extended diatribes against society are attributed to him. Not to mention lack of access to weapons history of mental health problems ect. Context is important, you seem to acknowledge that, so next time how about you put a little more thought into how it applies to this situation.

First off, kid needs to watch what he says. I don't know how he thought that was an okay thing to say, but he doesn't deserve eight years in prison for it. The kid's learned his lesson.

Maybe i'm a bit late. But what does this have to do with league of legends. Fukin everybody is a LoL player (includin myself).

Wow that was obviously not a serious 'threat'. He even said he was joking! This guy should not be in jail.

The guy's actions were idiotic to the extreme, but it doesn't deserve this. Real criminals who do horrible things get less time than this.

Elfgore:
What he did is not right and he deserves to be punished, but eight years in jail is to extreme.

No, what he did was fine, this is a MASSIVE overreaction on the part of authorities who have not a bone of sarcasm in their bodies.

He was not making a serious threat. He wasn't even making a threat at all. It was a bit stupid but not something worth punishment.

So we're supposed to blame THE ENTIRE U.S. JUSTICE SYSTEM because Texas can't get its shit together about one kid? And seeing as how he was arrest by the Austin Police Department I guess I better start pitching a fit about the FBI, right? No, I believe in giving blame where blame is due. If things are screwed up on a state and local level then I'm going to bitch about the state and local authorities. Texas and Comal County screwed this up and their officials are the ones who need to own up to this.

Its sad that Justin had to go through this. luckily for him his parents care a lot. and because of that the world knows about this injustice.
Its a good thing my family got back to being good friends with his dad, Jack Carter, right on time. Jack came to us desperate asking us to help do a fundraiser to get a lawyer. We told him to go public on it and post a petition on change.org. We had a similar situation where I did something stupid with an obscure Texas law, but I didn't need to go public since we had a big lawyer.

It's kinda funny. I was wondering how far it would spread. Then I check for a new Jimquisition and below I see a post for Justin and my face lights up since I could never get this kind of publicity for my cause when I was slandered by Fox new back in Feb 2010. I pray that he gets out soon. Jail makes a criminal out of people wrongfuly put there.

Edit: btw I lurk on escapist 99% of the time. I made an account for this since I shared the hell out of his petition on facebook and I might as well comment on my favorite site about it.

Kids have been saying stupid things for centuries only now we have the internet where everyone can see it, as for the case it seems like a classic example of the police/prison/judicial system having an agenda/incentive to prison people for profit, which is a big problem in the states.

As for terrorism it's getting bloody ridiculous, because if we've got super high tech security systems monitoring our phones, email and online activity, CCTV everywhere, x-ray body scanners in airports and kids being patted down and searched by the TSA, then I'd say the terrorists have won.

Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. -Benjamin Franklin.

Do they give compensation to those wrongfully imprisoned? Or is it just a letter in the mail that says "We apologize."?

I really want to know the reasoning they had behind this to keep the kid in jail for so long, for such a petty "crime".

captcha: bird cage
I hear ya....

Elfgore:
This is a very complicated case for me. He without a doubt, did something incredibly stupid but... does he really deserve eight years in jail for it? Hell after that school shooting in Newtown or whatever that school was called, some kid from a neighboring school said he could do better on facebook and was arrested. He got away with a slap on a wrist from the judge and was expelled from his school. That should be this guys punishment. Give him some community service or something because this kid will be most likely murdered in prison.

What he did is not right and he deserves to be punished, but eight years in jail is to extreme.

He does not deserve to be punished.

Any person with half a brain could determine it was a joke even if he didn't flat out say it was a joke the next sentence.

Flatfrog:

nvzboy:
Some people here have stated that the law wants to "set an example" by punishing this kid. What example? What is that example supposed to mean? Sarcasm is now outlawed? Even that route to justify the actions of the law enforcers is completely wrong.

If this sort of thing happened in Europe, the guy would have been on the news for having caused a fuss, be fined for falsely putting the police on alert, everyone would laugh at him and continue on their merry ways.

I wish that were true, but you obviously aren't aware of the Paul Chambers case

I think this is a genuinely worrying development at the moment. No one should *ever* be arrested purely on the basis of spoken words - not even direct threats. That is not a clear and present danger, people!

Oh... Guess I was wrong then... Now it worries me even more that it isn't even a first time and it likely won't be the last time something like this happens.

Tygerml:

Krinkle Ymouse:
So much for freedom of speech if you can be arrested for sarcasm... Way to go US...

While I agree that the prison time is wildly excessive, he should've had the common sense not to say something that stupid on Facebook where you really have no idea who's likely to read it.

"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" doesn't sound like someone being sarcastic so much as someone trying to be shocking.

Sarcastic, shocking, either way it's pretty obvious he didn't mean it (seriously when was the last time someone's eaten the still beating heart of someone). Any punishment violates his free speech.

WhiteTigerShiro:

Phrozenflame500:
So we're jailing kids now for saying sarcastic comments on the internet?

Damn, the terrorists really did win in the end.

Exactly. This is why, when everyone was busy celebrating about us killing Bin Laden, I was just pensive. Yeah, "we won". Meanwhile, let's look at the state of our country today compared to 12 years ago when the manhunt started. Is there ANYTHING that's improved in that time? Anything that's at least... not worse? When a man's stated goal is the decimate the economy of a country, did he really lose when said country bankrupts itself both morally and financially just to kill him?

Please, we're not that far gone, we haven't collapsed. And he had more specific goals than just that.

Plus this isn't the feds doing this, this is one part of Texas.

You know what's really odd about this sentencing?
ACTUALLY running over someone while drunk gives you less.
and it's infinitely more jail time than the people that crashed the global economy when they knew they were doing some illegal stuff.

Clive Howlitzer:
My country really makes me sick sometimes. I mean...all the time.

If it makes you feel better this is one part of Texas doing this, not the feds.

Thyunda:

Keep calling it a 'stupid mistake' if you like, but what the hell kind of country do you live in where sarcasm is now either terrorism or a stupid mistake? Aw kid you fucked up you said something you clearly didn't mean.
I knew it was sarcasm from the first two words. "Oh yeah." Nobody starts a threat like that, that's just ridiculous. What he said was hardly kid-friendly stuff, but it's a far cry from being a legitimate threat, and if you want to look at it properly, he chose his subject deliberately to further his opponent's insult that he was insane, given the mental problems school-shooters have often been diagnosed with. This wasn't a threat, it wasn't even dark humour, it was somebody deliberately playing up the trope most associated with the mentally unstable in the US specifically to point out how ludicrous the original insult was.

This part I at least understand. Not agree with, but understand. Once it got past the one whiny asshole who reported it in the first place, somewhere, you've got some lawmen who are scared shitless of the scenario that the they ignore a threat that is clearly a joke/sarcasm, that turns out not to be a joke, and then they're stuck feeling horrible and looking like fools while dealing with the backlash if/when it comes out that they dismissed it.

Or the guy getting the call was just as much of an uptight ass as the person reporting the post, either way.

What I doin't understand is the follow up. If they felt the need to investigate, fine. Do your due diligence and leave it alone, where is the logic behind the follow up? Months long imprisonment, huge bail? They're still acting like they found something to support the concept that the threat was a real one, where the fuck is what coming from?

I don't think you should be jailed for making a crappy joke.

bdcjacko:
I think I understand where the law is coming from here. They are making an example out of this twat. If he got a reasonable sentence of 6 months in jail and a year probation, no one would talk about it. But by giving him such a harsh sentence it has us talking about what is and isn't acceptable.

Also by threating to shoot up a school and eat the still beating hearts of children is not something to acceptable joke about where anyone can see or hear. If you want to joke about it with your friends, don't got posting it on Facebook. I will not be signing the petition because I think we should punish idiots.

Yes let's all punish people because we think what they said was stupid.

The idea that we should arrest people if they're a threat or actually hurt someone, yeah screw that let's jail people we look down upon.

Edit: By the way if we admit that it is an obvious joke (which it is), then punishing him violates his free speech.

Devoneaux:

Krinkle Ymouse:
So much for freedom of speech if you can be arrested for sarcasm... Way to go US...

I heard the guy's house was searched and they found nothing so they released him. But I guess that source was wrong.

Captcha: tesla coil.

I'm going to place a giant tesla coil in front of the prison he's being held. lol jk.

But seriously, captcha should be arrested.

You know, the people who make comments like this typically don't actually understand the first mmendmant, the laws around it, and what it actually guarantees you. For instance, running into a crowded public space and yelling "BOMB!" would almost certainly bring you jail time.

The first amendment does cover jokes. And this was clearly a joke and not an actual threat.

Jadak:

Thyunda:

Keep calling it a 'stupid mistake' if you like, but what the hell kind of country do you live in where sarcasm is now either terrorism or a stupid mistake? Aw kid you fucked up you said something you clearly didn't mean.
I knew it was sarcasm from the first two words. "Oh yeah." Nobody starts a threat like that, that's just ridiculous. What he said was hardly kid-friendly stuff, but it's a far cry from being a legitimate threat, and if you want to look at it properly, he chose his subject deliberately to further his opponent's insult that he was insane, given the mental problems school-shooters have often been diagnosed with. This wasn't a threat, it wasn't even dark humour, it was somebody deliberately playing up the trope most associated with the mentally unstable in the US specifically to point out how ludicrous the original insult was.

This part I at least understand. Not agree with, but understand. Once it got past the one whiny asshole who reported it in the first place, somewhere, you've got some lawmen who are scared shitless of the scenario that the they ignore a threat that is clearly a joke/sarcasm, that turns out not to be a joke, and then they're stuck feeling horrible and looking like fools while dealing with the backlash if/when it comes out that they dismissed it.

Or the guy getting the call was just as much of an uptight ass as the person reporting the post, either way.

What I doin't understand is the follow up. If they felt the need to investigate, fine. Do your due diligence and leave it alone, where is the logic behind the follow up? Months long imprisonment, huge bail? They're still acting like they found something to support the concept that the threat was a real one, where the fuck is what coming from?

This is just a guess, but it might have to do with the fact that the US justice system is a massive fucking joke. Prosecutors constantly pursue charges against people even when the state has no case, while ignoring cases brought against cops or politicians or other "privileged" folk. And that's just prosecutors. Judges and police officers have their own massive slew of problems, like officers consistently keeping their jobs after *fucking murdering* someone or worse, with no charges to boot.

Add into this private prison corporations and police/prison guard unions that literally get more money from having more prisoners/arrests, and you can see why the US has the largest incarceration rate in the world.

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