Two armed men arrested in Boston, threatened Pokemon World Championships
Two men from Iowa are now in Boston Police custody after allegedly threatening attendees of the Pokémon World Championships 2015 event. According to the Boston Police Department, Keven Norton, 18, and James Stumbo, 27, were arrested on several firearms charges. The arrests came after a number of threats made by the two men over social media. According to the official Pokémon site, both Norton and Stumbo are listed as invitees in the "masters division" of the World Championships for the Pokémon Trading Card Game.
Snapshot taken from Stumbo's Facebook profile page
Security at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston, MA, were made aware of these threats and stopped the two men when they arrived on Thursday. Detectives working on behalf of the police seized their vehicle, and after a search warrant was granted on Friday they found a 12 gauge shotgun, an AR-15 rifle, and hundreds of rounds of ammunition. The evidence was then used to arrest Norton and Stumbo the same afternoon in Saugus, MA.
An image of the weapons found in the possession of the accused
As of the time of this article's release, no motive for the threats has been discovered. However, it has been noted by Kotaku author Phil Owen that the rest of the Facebook posts are related to be normal posts about Pokémon.
The Pokémon Company International has since released a statement as follows:
“Prior to the event this weekend, our community of players made us aware of a security issue. We gathered information and gave it as soon as possible to the authorities at the John B. Hynes Veterans Memorial Convention Center who acted swiftly and spearheaded communication with the Boston Police Department. Due to quick action, the potential threat was resolved. The Pokémon Company International takes the safety of our fans seriously and will continue to ensure proper security measures are a priority.”
Why anyone would threaten the Pokémon World Championships is beyond comprehension. Perhaps the threats were taken out of context? Could this simply be a case of foolish social media postings? Was this a matter of bad judgement, the two carrying weapons on hand unrelated to a possible shooting?
Until the Boston Police service releases more information we may never know. All that is certain is that Pokémon fans can rest assured that everything has been done to ensure security and safety at these events.