These cops should never have played Pokémon Go during a robbery

It might surprise you, but some police officers play Pokémon Go like you. The problem is when the police in question play the game in augmented reality while on duty. This is exactly what happened in a police department in California.

The case surfaced on the sidelines of an appeal process. Two police officers challenged their dismissal in 2017. The latter maintained that they had been unfairly dismissed – but the judge finally upheld the dismissal, after consulting audio and video recordings captured inside the vehicle of the two agents.

Play Pokémon Go or prevent a heist?

These damning extracts indeed show that the two officers completely ignored a call for reinforcements while a robbery was underway not far from there. It must be said that the police, completely absorbed in the game, were about to capture a Snorlax – an extremely rare Pokémon at the time.

Later in the recording we hear the police discussing the capture of another Pokémon very rare at the time, a Togetic. In all, 20 minutes would have elapsed between the call for reinforcements, and the end of their game of Pokémon Go. Armed with the wall by the judge, the two police officers preferred to deny despite the evidence having played Pokémon Go for the service.

The latter even subsequently tried unsuccessfully to convince the magistrate that Pokémon Go is not really a game. The two agents were heavily condemned for their actions. It must be said that playing Pokémon Go while patrolling in a vehicle police and then making false statements to a detective of the American equivalent of the IGPN during the aftermath of the investigation is probably not the best thing to do to rally a magistrate to their cause.

“The recording shows that at approximately 18:09 […] Officer Mitchell alerted Officer Lozano that ‘Snorlax’ had just appeared at the intersection of 46th and Leimert. QAfter noting that ‘Leimert does not go until the 46th’ Lozano replied, ‘You know what I’m going to do? I’m going to get off on the 11th and take Crenshaw. I know that this way I could reach it ”, we read in the judgment report.

Officer Mitchell then suggests another path, before throwing to his colleague “on a quatre minutes”. For the next 20 minutes, the vehicle’s recording device captured the two officers talking about the Pokémon that appeared on their smartphones as they traveled in their company car. At one point we even hear them say “Wait, a Togetic has just appeared”.

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The report goes on to deliver all the details of this famous Pokémon hunt likely to constitute serious misconduct. Obviously as you can imagine, the dismissal for serious misconduct of the two officers was confirmed on appeal. The two ex-police officers will have to find another job …


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