A 46-year-old man who 'tracked down and throttled' a 13-year-old after being repeatedly killed in Call of Duty: Black Ops has been given a 16 week prison sentence.
Jobless Mark Bradford was subjected to a barrage of taunts by the teenager who called him a 'dickhead' after gunning him down online in Call of Duty: Black Ops, a court heard.
Bradford says he had been playing the game for an entire day when he 'lost it' and stormed to the teenager's home grabbing him by the throat. The attack was only stopped when the boy's mother intervened.
Father-of-three Bradford pleaded guilty to assault by beating at a Magistrates' Court, in Plymouth, UK.
The jail term was suspended for 12 months but he was ordered to wear an electronic tag, given a 7pm to 7am curfew and ordered to pay £80 compensation to the teenager.
District Judge Robert Morgan-Jones said Bradford had blurred the line between reality and fantasy through repeated playing of the game.
He added: “It is of great concern that you, as an adult, who I would expect to be able to control yourself, managed to blur the lines of fantasy and the real world in which you live in.
“Clearly you were upset. You then decided to leave your home address and physically confront the child. This involved putting your hands around his neck.
“I do not accept, whatever he said, that you should have behaved in the way you did.
“He was a vulnerable victim and placing your hands around his neck put him in fear of injury. It must have been a very frightening experience for him.” The youngster, who cannot be identified, said: “I was just sat playing. We'd had a bit of a joke and then he stormed in and grabbed me. I didn't know what was going on.”
The victim's 33-year-old mother said after the attack: “It's pathetic that a grown man would attack a defenceless child like this.
“If you can't handle losing to a child then you shouldn't be playing games.”
Bradford said: “I'd been playing the whole day and he was baiting me and just would not shut up.
“I just lost it. In a moment of madness I went round to the house. I didn't know what I was going to do.
“It wasn't malice. I just grabbed him. I've seen him since and apologised. The injuries weren't that bad but I do regret it.”