Two Marine veterans playing "Pokemon Go" in a Los Angeles suburb on Jul. 12 ended up catching an attempted murder suspect instead of a Pikachu.
The game is designed to allow people to catch fictional animals, not real criminals. (Screenshot: YouTube/Lachlan - Minecraft & More)
Javier Soch and Seth Ortega were hunting Pokemon near a museum when they saw a man who appeared to be scaring a woman and her three sons, according to reporting in the Los Angeles Times. The Marines talked to the man, who was agitated but coherent. He asked for cigarettes and shelter and the Marines told him to check the local police station for help.
The Marines kept their eyes on the man as he walked off. "We kept our distance. We didn't want to alert the guy and escalate the situation," Soch told reporter Matt Hamilton.
The man interacted with two more families. He continued to act suspiciously but did not do anything illegal -- at first.
"[We] walked across the street and the gentleman actually walks up and touches one of the children, one of the boys, his toe, and starts walking his way up to the knee," Ortega told an ABC affiliate.
The veterans sprung into action. Soch stayed with the family while Ortega sprinted after the man. The man attempted to flee, but he couldn't get away from the Marine.
Running from Marines is not generally a winning idea. Photo Credit: 26th MEU
He was arrested on suspicion of child annoyance, but the police then learned that the man had a warrant out for attempted murder in Sonoma, California. He will be extradited to face charges there.