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Thursday, March 13, 2014

Man Accused of Killing Someone in a Movie Theater for Texting Had Just Used His Own Phone to Text

Posted by on Thu, Mar 13, 2014 at 10:21 AM

That's the latest on that crazy story out of Florida, the AP is reporting. God, Florida is the worst. As are guns.

By the way, the accused killer, a former police officer, has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him.


Comments (23) RSS

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JonnoN 1
Good thing he had all those gun safety commendations. Another NRA poster boy.
Posted by JonnoN on March 13, 2014 at 10:39 AM · Report this
Wait, the shooter was texting too? Unacceptable.

1,000 years. Dungeon.
Posted by GermanSausage on March 13, 2014 at 10:48 AM · Report this
Akbar Fazil 3
Not to defend this asshole, but according to that link he had texted at 1:04 and the movie started at 1:20. Texting before the previews even roll? Totally acceptable. Texting after previews go? Not acceptable. Freaking out and murdering someone for doing so? Worst decision ever.
Posted by Akbar Fazil on March 13, 2014 at 10:49 AM · Report this
Speaking of the shooting itself (not this latest wrinkle) I just don't think someone discreetly texting in a movie theater should be considered such a big deal faux pas. A phone conversation (or any conversation) is surely distracting, but in this era we should all be able to handle a small amount of a tiny screen near us. The big screen and big sound of the main movie should really be enough to keep our attention.

And yes I know there were posted rules against texting.

If the texting is constant and accompanied by notification sounds, that's of course a different story.
Posted by lotus eater on March 13, 2014 at 11:07 AM · Report this
@4 totally wrong. Phone screens are often bright in a dark theater, and it is very distracting. Stay the fuck at home if you 'have to' text. People will rightly hate you, and also possibly shoot you dead.
Posted by deign_to_say on March 13, 2014 at 11:13 AM · Report this
Phoebe in Wallingford 6
Mental illness and firearms issue.
Posted by Phoebe in Wallingford on March 13, 2014 at 11:13 AM · Report this
#4 - I totally disagree (just my opinion). Have you ever had someone directly in front of you texting? The light is INCREDIBLY distracting. At least it is to me. If they had a "dark mode" on phones where the background was dark and the text was lit -- producing less overall light -- that might help.
Posted by pffft on March 13, 2014 at 11:15 AM · Report this
@6 Thanks for the status update Phoebe, but could you post something germane to the post?
Posted by Thread Police - Non Fasion Division on March 13, 2014 at 11:25 AM · Report this
@4, I, too, disagree. The light generated by a phone screen is a distraction. We involuntarily respond to it by noticing and processing its source. Momentary though that may be, it breaks the viewer's concentration on the film. And, of course, not all films are loud and bright at all times, so the light from the screen is not a reliable shield from distracting, dynamic light in the periphery. Nor need it be relied on as such. It's bad form to navigate a mobile during a film in a theater. A shootable offense? Of course not. But surely deserving of a verbal rebuke.
Posted by California on March 13, 2014 at 11:26 AM · Report this
undead ayn rand 10
@4: You are absolutely clueless. I can see your phone, and it draws the eye away from the screen. Stop doing that rude shit or stay in the very back row.
Posted by undead ayn rand on March 13, 2014 at 11:27 AM · Report this
fletc3her 11
I wonder how long before a police guild gives him a medal.
Posted by fletc3her on March 13, 2014 at 11:33 AM · Report this
very bad homo 12
@4 Please stay home.
Posted by very bad homo on March 13, 2014 at 11:48 AM · Report this
stinkbug 13
@4: The problem is that the texter usually has no idea what "discreetly" means. Example: once there was a woman in the back row of the front section at a Pacific Place theater using her phone. She cupped it so that people on her left and right couldn't see it. However, nearly everyone in the rear/stadium seating section could see her phone. It was like a huge firefly was moving about. She got accosted by numerous people.

In short, you can't be totally discreet using that phone in a theater, no matter how slick you might think you are. If you don't want to watch the movie then stay home.
Posted by stinkbug on March 13, 2014 at 11:49 AM · Report this
Maybe the shooter was texting during the TV series previews and soda ads that run before the lights dim, which is ok, and the victim during the film previews, which is not. They are part of the show.
Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe http://_ on March 13, 2014 at 11:53 AM · Report this
Urgutha Forka 15
The last time I went to a multiplex-style movie theater (many years ago, to see a film I've completely forgotten), probably 6 or 7 people were texting as soon as they got their seats. Another 2 to 5 people were taking phone calls - and getting up and pacing the front of the theater while talking. And maybe 10 children were running up and down the rows and aisles then entire time. I (and several other people) got up to complain and get the staff to stop them all. Ushers would come in and ask them to stop texting/talking/walking around/letting their kids run wild/etc... all to no avail. The people ignored them. The staff basically shrugged and gave up. I stayed for a while to just kind of watch the spectacle of it all, but finally left and asked for my money back. They refunded me, after first trying to get me to take free movie tickets instead.

I haven't been to a big screen theater since.

This was for a PG-13 movie that probably could have been R, but I recall it being blockbuster-esque so probably bribed the ratings board into the lesser rating.

Anyway, I think my moral is that this shit is standard operating procedure at big multiplexes. That, or the moral is that many human beings are trashy, selfish, pieces of shit who don't give a fuck about anyone but themselves and their precious snowflakes.
Posted by Urgutha Forka on March 13, 2014 at 12:20 PM · Report this
I think Phoebe is on to something. It sounds as though the elder Matthews may be slipping into dementia, considering the testimony about his reaction to the woman who was texting. Plus, firearms issues in Florida are just going to get more bizarre with every passing news cycle.
Posted by Calpete on March 13, 2014 at 12:29 PM · Report this
stinkbug 17
@15: I've never experienced that in a multiplex around here. How do you know it's "standard operating procedure at big multiplexes" if you haven't been to any theater in "many years"?

Maybe you should visit a decent theater someday.
Posted by stinkbug on March 13, 2014 at 12:31 PM · Report this
keshmeshi 18

The shooting victim was texting before the feature started, during the previews, a time when many theaters don't even bring down the lights in the house. It's also before the theaters run their "please don't be a dick" PSA. Incidentally, the shooting victim was texting someone to tell them he would soon be incommunicado because the movie was about to start.
Posted by keshmeshi on March 13, 2014 at 12:40 PM · Report this
brandon 19
So is this guy going to get the book thrown at him or is this going to be another Stand Your Ground cracker gets away with murder thing?

I ask because I don't see how he can get away with it even in a red state.
Posted by brandon on March 13, 2014 at 12:51 PM · Report this
seattlestew 20
"God, Florida is the worst. As are guns."

Commentary win of the day.
Posted by seattlestew on March 13, 2014 at 12:53 PM · Report this
@19, he's going for the stand your ground "I shot the guy in self defense" routine.

But the victim isn't a black teenager, so the excuse might not work this time with a florida jury.
Posted by GermanSausage on March 13, 2014 at 1:24 PM · Report this
Urgutha Forka 22
I do go to decent theaters. None of them are the 20 screen multiplex ones.

I suppose you're right though. Things may have changed in the 7-ish years since I've been to one.

That was simply my experience at that time. Coincidentally, it was also in Florida.
Posted by Urgutha Forka on March 13, 2014 at 2:46 PM · Report this
stinkbug 23
@22: Try going to a place like Sundance Cinema sometime. 10 screens, 21+ to enter, reserved seating, alcohol, etc. You won't find kids running around or peeps using their phones during movies.
Posted by stinkbug on March 13, 2014 at 5:59 PM · Report this

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