Two teenagers accused of beating a seven-year-old girl to death are said to have been imitating moves taken from Mortal Kombat.
According to a report on CNN, 17-year-old Lamar Roberts and 16-year-old Heather Trujillo were babysitting Trujillo’s half-sister, Zoe Garcia, when the violence began. According to Roberts, he was playing videogames in the downstairs of the house while the sisters “wrestled” upstairs, but a witness claimed in an affidavit that Roberts said he had kicked the child. When asked why he didn’t stop when the seven-year-old asked him to, Roberts said, “I don’t know, I was drunk.”
The pair attempted to revive the girl by putting her under running water and attempting CPR before calling 911. She later died at hospital; an autopsy found she had a broken wrist, over 20 bruises, swelling of the brain and bleeding in her neck muscles and under her spine.
While it’s unclear whether the pair had actually played Mortal Kombat, a report in the Denver Post said Trujillo claimed they were “acting out” the game, while the Rocky Mountain News quoted police as saying she tripped her sister, “punched her in the stomach, karate chopped her lower arms, punched and pinched the victim’s thighs, kicked her in the shins, slapped her stomach and buttocks and poked at the victim’s chest.” The Rocky Mountain News article went on to quote a report stating that “violent videogames may be more harmful than violent TV and movies because they are interactive, engrossing and require the player to identify with the aggressor.”
However, the Denver Post also said that at least four neighbors as well as a school teacher said they suspected the girl had been the victim of ongoing abuse, which they had reported prior to the child’s death.