Daniel Petric, comes from a typical American household – his father is a pastor at a Church in Wllington, Ohio and his mother was a stay at home Mom. Daniel loved to play video games, specifically Halo 3. Today, the 17-year-old could spend the rest of his life behind bars for killing his mother because she took away Halo 3 from him. As the Judge told him yesterday morning that he was guilty of killing his mother and shooting his father over the video game, all he could do was lower his head.
Lorain County Common Pleas Judge James Burge, who presided over Daniels trial last month, found him guilty of aggravated murder, attempted aggravated murder and tampering with evidence for the Oct. 20, 2007, shootings. In the court room was 15 family members and close friends, along with his father all listening and crying as the verdict was read. As Daniel left the courtroom, his father told him “I love you, Danny”. His father, family members, and friends have forgiven the teen for what he has done.
The judge ordered a presentence report and further psychological testing for Daniel and will sentence him in about two months. He faces a minimum sentence of 23 years-to-life in prison and a maximum of life without parole.
On the night of the murder Daniel told his parents to close their eyes and stated that “I have a surprise for you” before he shot both is Father once in the face and his Mother twice in her arms and once in the head. The young boy then attempted to place the gun in his fathers hands and told police his father had shot his mother.
The judge believes that Daniel suffers from a “serious defect of the mind,” likening a video game addiction to depression, stress and anxiety disorders. A friend of Daniels testified during his trial that in a weekend they were together, Daniel spent 16 to 18 hours each day playing “Halo 3,” in which “you play as a futuristic warrior trying to eliminate aliens from the planet Earth. You go around and shoot the aliens.”
“You can shoot these aliens and theyre there again the next day. You have to shoot them again,” the judge said. “And I firmly believe that Daniel Petric had no idea at the time he hatched this plot that if he killed his parents they would be dead forever.
“I think if we watched to see physiological changes (in the brain from video games) there will come a point to when this is a valid defense. But were not there yet.”