People play "Pokemon Go" on a street in Hong Kong, China, July 26, 2016. (Photo: REUTERS/Bobby Yip)
Since its introduction, Pokémon GO has caused an outbreak of mishaps and crimes with more likely to occur as the game soars in popularity.
Two Canadian teenagers wandered off while playing the game and ended up crossing into a remote part of Montana, where U.S. Customs and Border Patrol promptly nabbed them.
A spokesperson for the U.S. agency said, "Both juveniles were so captivated by their Pokémon GO games that they lost track of where they were."
The border patrol officers called the teens’ mothers who came to pick them up and hopefully give them a scolding.
However, the weird happenings that occur while people play Pokémon GO don’t end there:
- Two California men went off a cliff while playing the game. The men fell an estimated 50 to 90 feet and had to be hospitalized.
- A string of robberies in Missouri have been blamed on the game, because the perpetrators were using the game to target people in remote areas;
- A Newmarket, Ont., woman was arrested and charged with assault with a weapon, after she allegedly shot at Pokémon GO players with a pellet gun; and
- A Vancouver resident fed up with players constantly entering his property posted a sign that read, "GET A LIFE AND STAY OUT OF MY YARD."
That begs the question: if you unintentionally commit a crime while playing Pokémon GO, can you use the game as a defence?
According to lawyers, Pikachu can’t get you out of this one.
Texas lawyer Loretta Powers told USA Today, that given the string of misadventures and crimes happening that involve Pokémon GO, it’s only a matter of time before a case is brought in front of a court. Courts won’t be sympathetic to people committing crimes while playing the game, because they expect people to take responsibility for their actions.
In other words, keep your eyes open and be aware of your surroundings when chasing Pokeballs.