A 14-year-old student at a Christian academy in Washington state has been charged with attempted murder for allegedly shooting both of his parents in the head after they restricted him from playing violent video games.
Grant County prosecutors on Monday said that they were asking that 14-year-old Nathan Brooks be tried as an adult for the attempted murder of his parents.
According to a Moses Lake police report obtained by iFIBER One News, Nathon Brooks had considered killing his parents, 38-year-old Jonathan Brooks and 39-year-old Elizabeth Brooks, since the age of 8. He had recently been been grounded for two weeks from using “electronic devices” — including playing video games — and had been punished with detention for being late to class.
Nathon Brooks had admitted to police that he had been obsessed with video games.
“He said he quit playing violent video games because he thought they were making him more violent,” Moses Lake police Sgt. Mike Williams noted in the document. “I asked him how much he played video games, and he told me ‘24/7,’ up until he got his electronics taken away.”
Nathon Brooks indicated that he had decided to shoot his parents after his mother told his he was “meeting the definition of insanity” by disobeying over and over again. He said that his parents had been angry after he recently took one of their credit cards.
On Friday, Police believe the boy pried open a gun safe to retrieve a .22 caliber pistol. After listening to music for about 90 minutes, he decided to kill his parents.
First thing I would point out concerning this story, and as somebody who has worked with the mentally ill for years, is that if you are living with somebody who is "meeting the definition of insanity" the LAST thing you do is tell them that.
You get them help.
Another thing, While it may be a knee jerk reaction in this case to blame this on the video games, if this young man has been considering murdering his parents since age 8, that he has a deep seated mental illness that may have been exacerbated by the games, it may also have served as a pressure relief valve which provided an outlet for this young man's extreme emotions.
After all he did not act on his fantasies of killing his parents, until he no longer had access to the games,
All in all it sounds like these parents did EVERYTHING wrong in this scenario. I am sure that putting him in the Christian Academy was because they believed that this young man needed some Jesus in his life to correct his behaviors, when in fact he needed a psychological evaluation and access to mental health supports.
It appears that the ONLY saving grace here was that the caliber of weapon used spared the life of his parents. If he had an assault weapon or a higher caliber handgun he would have successfully murdered his parents, and likely be locked away for the rest of his life.
It looks like there are any number of handy places to lay the blame in this scenario. There is mental illness, violent video games, poor parenting, and access to guns. And it seems like all of them could share equal blame here.
However I must point out that the boy did not bash his parents in the head with a shovel, or stab them in their sleep. Instead he went through all of the trouble of prying open the, clearly poorly constructed, safe to get the gun, because the gun represented power, and he needed to feel powerful in order to kill his parents.
Essentially this was a catastrophe waiting to happen, but the trigger that made it a reality was access to a weapon whose sole function is to end human lives.