TIME Crime

Online Video Game Player Gets Robbed While Live Streaming

MMORPGs: better than a guard dog

Would-be robbers have always had to worry about getting caught in the act by a security camera. But these days, they should also be looking for online video-game players. Two thieves in Tempe, Arizona, broke into a house shortly after 5 AM and locked its two residents in a bedroom in order to take them to a bank later and withdraw money, according to AZ Family. But they didn’t suspect Dota 2.

Dota 2 is the sequel to a popular online game, Defense of the Ancients, and one of the house’s occupants was a popular player who often broadcasted her games for others to watch. In the game broadcast’s webcam pane, it’s possible to catch a glimpse of the robber while the player, who goes by the name Sajedene, runs away. Immediately, video game fans from around the world started calling the police, trying to identify where Sajedene lived.

When the police arrived, one suspect escaped and the other, Edgardo Martinez, tried to flee, but officers caught him on foot. The other robber is still at large. At least one of the criminals was carrying a gun, briefly visible in the surreal video above.

The immediate reaction to the crime points to the interconnectedness of the video game community as well as the kind of crowd-sourced investigative work that has taken root on the Internet. For Sajedene, it paid off to have hundreds of people watching her back.

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