Pokemon Go player stops mid-game to shoot man trying to rob him

Players had gathered in a park to try and find Magikarp – but ended up in a shootout with an armed robber

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The Independent US

Two men who tried to rob a group of people playing Pokemon Go ended up getting shot by the busy trainers.

An attempted robbery on Pokemon Go players – who were in a Las Vegas park that has become popular with players because it is a good place for catching Magikarp – ended in a shootout when one of the trainers pulled out his own gun and shot the robbers.

The incident was just the latest robbery of people playing the hugely popular game. Police have warned that Pokemon Go can put people in danger, because it encourages people to head to usually off-limits areas and criminals can find those places and watch for them to arrive.

Pokemon Go causes crash

The incident left a Pokemon player and one of the would-be armed robbers hospitalised with non-life threatening injuries, according to Las Vegas police spokeswoman Laura Meltzer. The injured suspect and a young driver are expected to be charged.

The events began when a group of six people headed to a public park to catch Pokemon, just after 4am. They headed there because it is a good place to catch the virtual monsters, particularly the fish-like Magikarp, according to Facebook users – which can only be found by actually heading to relevant locations.

At that moment, an armed man and a driver pulled up in an SUV and demanded they handed over the things they had, police said. One of the Pokemon players had a concealed carry permit that lets him carry a gun – which he then pulled out and shot at the would-be robber.

One of the Pokemon players was hit in the stomach and hospitalised, according to the police. It isn’t clear whether that was the same man who was carrying the weapon.

Police haven’t said whether or not the robbers targeted the victims because they were playing Pokemon, or knew they would be there because of the game.

But the location-based nature of the game means that it has served as a helpful tool for some robbers. Because certain areas are especially good for catching Pokemon – and are not necessarily vetted for safety – it can serve as a way of criminals to know where people might be.

Other criminals have been said to be placing special lures to bring even more Pokemon – and players. When those trainers arrive looking for the creatures they ambush them and rob them.