…and completing our trifecta of Warcraft-esque news for the moment, we have a tale where WoW is used for good, rather than putting a marriage at risk or tearing apart a family. This time around, the game was crucial in tracking down and detaining a fugitive wanted for drug dealing.
It all takes place in Kokomo, Indiana in 2008, where the police were trying to serve a warrant on a gentleman known as Alfred Hightower. He disappeared, and they were told he had fled the US to hide out in Canada.
Sherriff’s deputy Matt Roberson has an eye for detail:
“I put that information in my pocket and continued to gather evidence, and one day I got information that this guy was a regular player of an online gaming system, which was referred to as ‘some wizards and warcraft’ game.”
Now, you and I both know that could be jsut about any game on the market today – but Roberson is secretly a bit of a (reformed) nerd:
“I knew from the description that he was playing ‘World of Warcraft.’ I knew because I used to play it.”
So – thanks to Roberson’s handy detective skills, the police sent a subpoena to Blizzard Entertainment (y’know, the game’s developer/publisher), and after a short delay, a “package of information” on the alleged dealer arrived on the police doorstep.
We’re not sure what was included in this package, but one thing’s for certain – Hightower’s IP address was all over it like some sort of digital fingerprint. It was a short matter of popping the numbers into a search engine and – hey presto – Hightower’s hideout was discovered: Ottawa, Canada.
US police got in touch with Canadian police (probably not the Mounties, but we can dream), and Hightower was quickly arrested and deported back to the US. If convicted of the drug charges, he could face up to 10 years in prison.
Source: Yahoo! Canada