Pokemon GO players got something they weren’t looking for when they were playing with the app at Harbour Square Park in Toronto, Canada — being shot at. According to the Toronto Star, a group of Pokemon GO players were shot at by a 29-year-old woman on Saturday night. Police were called to the Newmarket area at around 10:30 p.m. Saturday, according to the police statement on Monday. Instead of preventing players from going to the area to play Pokemon GO, players were out in force in the Newmarket area after the statement was released.
The woman used a pellet gun to shoot at the players, and when police arrived, witnesses directed them to a two-story apartment, where the woman had allegedly been shooting the gun from the roof at the Pokemon GO players below. The shooter, Patricia Champagne of Newmarket, was arrested and faces a charge of assault with a weapon and a charge of possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, according to the York Regional police. Fortunately, no one was hurt when she fired at the crowd.
A witness said that Champagne was well known in the community and that she had never caused any trouble before. One Pokemon GO player, Graham Coulter, 26, told the Toronto Sun that the number of recent anti-Pokemon incidents worries him, especially if someone is shooting pellets at a crowd, but it wasn’t enough to keep him from playing the game.
While no incidents of Pokemon GO players being shot at have been reported elsewhere, Canada does have a ban on some firearms and prohibits anyone from owning assault-type weapons, but pellet guns can still cause damage and even kill someone.
Other things that have brought negative attention to the Pokemon GO craze include a teen finding a dead body in rural Wyoming on July 8, according to an article by US Weekly. Armed robbers were also using the app to lure players to secluded areas in O’Fallon, Missouri, where they would rob the victims. Four teens robbed nearly a dozen Pokemon GO players in early July before they were apprehended and arrested.
Pokemon GO players also caused a ruckus when they started going to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. and the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum in Poland. Officials from both museums asked the maker of the app, Niantic, to remove the historic sites from the PokeStops on July 12. Officials of the Auschwitz museum said that it was “not appropriate” to play the game there.
In Phoenix, Arizona, one of the PokeStops was at the New Windsor Hotel, which is actually a halfway house for registered sex offenders. The hotel was on a list of historic places, which is most likely why it was included in the app’s sites, but it caused some concern for the fact that children might go to the hotel while playing the game.
Westboro Church has also been targeted by Pokemon GO players, the church is listed as a gym in the app, and a LGBT user claimed the church with a Pokemon named Clefairy and nicknamed it “LoveIsLove.” The controversial church responded by making their own Pokemon GO account to try to “take the church back.”
Maybe not so negative, but certainly attention-grabbing, US Weekly also mentioned another “church” that was on the PokeStop list. The church is actually a “deconsecrated church” that Boon Sheridan of Massachusetts has made into a home, but it was on the app as a gym because it used to be a church. Sheridan wasn’t really annoyed by the fact that people were roaming around in his yard, however.
“Living in an old church means many things. Today it means my house is a Pokemon GO gym. This should be fascinating,” Sheridan posted on Twitter.
Two other weird things that happened with Pokemon GO according to US Weekly – first, a former U.S. Marine who is fighting ISIS with Peshmerga soldiers in Iraq “caught” a Pokemon on the front line. Second, Jonathan Theriot in Texas captured a Pokemon while his wife was in labor.
Hey, gotta catch ’em all!
[Photo by Randy Miramontez/Shutterstock]