Marines notice attempted murder suspect after Pokemon Go glitches

Two Marine Corps veterans caught a suspected murder suspect in a California park while playing Pokemon Go.
(Image credit: JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

"Attempted murder suspect" is not a Pokémon, but it's exactly what two Marine Corps veterans found while they were playing Pokémon Go in Los Angeles on Tuesday. The iPhone game, which encourages users to wander around their neighborhoods in search of diverse Pokemon, took Javier Soch, 26, and Seth Ortega, 24, to downtown Fullerton on what they thought was a regular Pokémon hunt.

When the game glitched and froze, Soch looked up and noticed an oddly-dressed man who appeared to be harassing a mother and her three sons, The Los Angeles Times reports. The man told them he was looking for cigarettes. Soch said that after the man left, he saw him approach another mother with two sons and wipe his hand across one of the boys in a way that struck Soch as strange. Soch and Ortega then tailed the man to a park, where he had followed the mother and the boys, and they witnessed him grabbing one boy's foot and leg.

The ex-Marines intervened and escorted the man away until police arrived for questioning. The man was arrested for suspicion of child annoyance but investigators later learned that he had a warrant out for his arrest for attempted murder charges in Sonoma County, in northern California.

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Soch told the Times that "the experience has not diminished his enjoyment of the Pokémon Go game." Read the full details of the encounter at The Los Angeles Times.

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Jeva Lange

Jeva Lange was the executive editor at She formerly served as The Week's deputy editor and culture critic. She is also a contributor to Screen Slate, and her writing has appeared in The New York Daily News, The Awl, Vice, and Gothamist, among other publications. Jeva lives in New York City. Follow her on Twitter.