Partial Transcript: Episode 67 (Terrorism)
Nick: I hate this.
Virginia: You brought it up.
Andrew: I want to start with the case of Justin Carter.
Virginia: How old is he?
Andrew: 18. He said something stupid on the internet, which happens every day. Most of the time, no one thinks twice. This guy gets thrown in jail.
Leland: He wrote, “I’m fucked in the head all right. I think Ima shoot up a kindergarten / And watch the blood of the innocent rain down / And eat the beating heart of one of them.”
Andrew: Then followed by “LOL JK”
Leland: They always omit that part.
Nick: Our media always does this. Misreport the news, and then try the person given the false story.
Andrew: I’m surprised that no one has ever shown the full conversation. It’s as simple as going a screen-print.
Nick: Much like the Zimmerman trial where the media shows pictures of a 12-year-old kid instead of a 6’4” guy.
Andrew: We all agree that it was a dumb comment. Kids do stupid things all the time.
Virginia: Facebook didn’t come out until I was almost done with college. I’m really lucky.
Andrew: I’m sure there’s a ton of stupid stuff I wrote in IRC chat rooms.
Andrew: What happened is that some lady in Canada saw this conversation and freaked out. She did a Google search to see if there were elementary schools near where he lived. And surprise, he did!
Virginia: He lives in America.
Nick: Sex offender, much?
Andrew: So, this lady is doing all this research. She calls the police and says that a kid is going to shoot up a school. The police spend a month investigating. That, to me, says that they knew that it wasn’t a credible threat. Anyone who looks at the conversation knows that it wasn’t credible. But, after a month, they decided to file terrorism charges. They set his bail at $500,000.
Leland: What was the prompting to arrest him for?
Andrew: I’m not sure, but it’s really common for people to claim that they’re trying to protect the children. Most of the responses are, “You just can’t be too careful.”
Nick: This guy’s 18. He’s a child himself.
Andrew: We took a guy who plays League of Legends and other stuff online and put him with actual criminals.
Leland: We’ve institutionalized him.
Virginia: At what point would have this guy been credible? If he left out “LOL JK?”
Andrew: A history of behavior. One comment isn’t enough.
Leland: Send him to the San Antonio mental health agency for an evaluation. Find out if he has a history of violence. Has he been in any fights or been arrested? I’m sure they investigated to some degree. Anything at all. It seems like it was a gesture that got out of hand, that they were doing it to avoid the possibility of him doing something more extreme.
Andrew: I’m still blown away that it was some random lady in Canada.
Virginia: Canadians are very polite.
Nick: This has happened before. The football player sex case. That was a blogger.
Leland: The guys that raped that girl?
Nick: Allegedly raped her. We did a whole podcast on that.
Andrew: That one wasn’t as clear-cut. You’re be hard-pressed to find a person who could read that whole conversation and think he’s a threat.
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