Gamer opens fire, kills two and injures eleven at a Madden eSports tournament in Jacksonville, Florida
In a highly tragic and unfortunate incident, a gamer opened fire at an ongoing Madden NFL eSports tournament in Jacksonville, Florida. The suspect, identified as 24-year old David Katz from Baltimore, Maryland, was a participant in the tournament on Sunday at Jacksonville Landing and was carrying a handgun with him. The tournament was live streamed on Twitch when suddenly gun shots were heard after which the game was abruptly stopped. Katz killed two players and injured eleven others before turning the gun on himself.
Cops reached the site of the incident, the GLHF Game Bar in Jacksonville Landing, within two minutes. Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams confirmed that the Sheriff's office is in possession of the live stream video and anyone with additional footage can bring it to their notice. Sheriff Williams confirmed that the suspected shooter was dead along with two others and the injured were quickly transported by the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department to local hospitals. The injured persons are said to be stable.
The suspect, David Katz, went by the gamer name 'Bread' and had won Madden eSports tournaments in 2017. Reports say that Katz was an introvert and mostly 'meant business'. Police said they were searching Katz's vehicle to understand his actions prior to the incident. His Baltimore residence is also being searched.
The incident shook all those who were present at the venue. The unsuspecting players gathered at GLHF Game Bar with a good intention of playing some competitive eSports in true sportsmanship spirit and with hopes making it to the higher level tournament in Las Vegas slated to begin in October. Drini Gjoka, a 19-year old player who got hit by a bullet on the thumb called it the "worst day of [his] life." Another player Chris 'Dubby' McFarland tweeted,
They took me to the hospital. Bullet grazed my head. I feel fine, just a scratch on my head. Traumatized and devastated."
The names of the deceased were not revealed by the Sheriff but their names were reported on social media by those who knew them. Taylor 'spotmeplzzz' Robertson was one of the victims who was identified by his sponsor, Dot City Gaming. Another victim, Eli 'trueboy' Clayton was identified by the Calabasas High School football team in California. CHS Coyote Football tweeted,
Our hearts are broken as we learned that former Calabasas Football player @True__818 (Elijah Clayton) was senselessly murdered today during the mass shooting in Florida. We send our love, condolences, and deepest sense of sorrow to Elijah's Family and Friends."
Electronic Arts, publisher of Madden NFL 19 posted a tweet stating that they are working with the authorities to ascertain the facts,
We are aware of an incident at a sanctioned Madden Championship Series competition in Jacksonville. We are working with authorities to gather facts at this stage. This is a horrible situation, and our deepest sympathies go out to all involved."
This is not the only shooting incident in recent memory, though. In April this year, a lone shooter opened fire at the YouTube headquarters in San Bruno, California. Recently, Valve removed the game Active Shooter from Steam as it invited a lot of negative press as it provide the option of playing the role of a shooter or a civilian attempting to survive a school shooting incident.