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This Online Harasser Is Exactly As Terrible As You’d Imagine

This Online Harasser Is Exactly As Terrible As You’d Imagine: © Brian Jackson / Alamy

© Brian Jackson / Alamy

A Canadian League of Legends player has pleaded guilty to dozens of offenses, most notably “swatting” women who turned down his online advances. You know, “swatting"—that thing where a SWAT team busts down your door as you play video games online because some twerp called in a fake threat and threw your name and address into the mix.

The perp is only 17, but he’s a level of awful just shy of supervillain, like if Dr. Doom was more intent on ruining the Fantastic Four’s lives than taking over the world. The teen, whose name hasn’t been published because of Canadian law, pleaded guilty last week to a dozen charges stemming from terrorizing people online, including extortion, public mischief and criminal harassment.

That brings him up to 23 guilty pleas so far in the case. He’s been charged with 40 crimes. And he’s only 17.

His victims were gamers, mostly League of Legends players, and usually women. Turning down the teenager’s social network connections and advances was enough to become a target.

As the Tri-City News reports, the case’s prosecutor detailed several of the incidents during a sentencing hearing last week in Port Coquitlam, British Columbia. In the most intense set of incidents, the teenager harassed a female student at the University of Arizona in Tucson in 2014, swatting her on more than one occasion after she rejected him. He also posted her parents’ credit card information online and hacked her email, eventually causing her to withdraw from the University of Arizona for the semester.

In other cases, the teen called in bomb threats, swatted other victims, and posted others’ credit information online, destroying their credit. He even ordered pizzas delivered to numerous unsuspecting victims, although granted, the perks of surprise pizza might outweigh the harm in those cases.

But it wasn’t just specific people the teen targeted: he also admitted to calling in a bomb threat to Disney World’s Space Mountain, an incident that shut the ride down in 2014. Because some men (read: teenage boys) just want to watch the world burn (and ruin your day at Disney World, arguably worse).

While it’s a major victory for the victims in the case that British Columbian police eventually nabbed the kid, the best result of all this would be drawing more attention to online harassment techniques like swatting. A California law stiffened penalties for swatting in 2014, but many police departments have still never heard of the practice. Prosecuting it is tough, too.

Like any good despicable cartoon of a person, he’s seemed remorseless through it all. The Province reports that he fidgeted and even smiled to himself during the sentencing hearing. He also bragged about making swatting calls on Twitter, and posted hours of YouTube video of himself swatting people. At least he provided plenty of evidence of his guilt, even before the plea.

The teen’s sentencing hearing is scheduled to continue on June 29.

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