A Florida woman who pleaded guilty to shaking her baby to death in January said FarmVille made her do it.
22-year-old Alexandra V. Tobias entered a plea of guilty to to second-degree murder today in the shaking death of three-month-old Dylan Lee Edmonson. She told investigators that she became angry with the infant because he was crying while she was playing FarmVille on Facebook; she claimed she shook the baby, had a cigarette and then shook him again, adding that he may have hit his head while she was shaking him.
Tobias will be sentenced in December and although guidelines call for 25 to 50 years in prison, Judge Adrian Soud gave no indication as to the length of the sentence he'll impose.
Blaming videogames for inexcusable behavior is nothing new but as Gamezebo pointed out, this incident could be awkward for Zynga because it's been so open in the past about its "calculating and psychological" efforts to make its games as addictive as possible. It's obviously no excuse, but evil can always find a way to justify itself and given Zynga's history and the dodgy reputation it's already saddled with, this kind of publicity is just about the last thing it needs.