A Long Island man was arrested last week after he threatened an 11-year-old boy who beat him on the online video game “Fortnite.”
Michael Aliperti, 45, of Huntington, is charged with second-degree aggravated harassment and endangering the welfare of a child, Suffolk County Police Chief Stuart Cameron said during a news conference. Aliperti was arrested on the charges Tuesday.
The investigation began last Monday after the victim and his parents reported he had received threats via text message and online voice messages on his Xbox after he beat the man in the popular game.
“He said, ‘I’m going to find you with a gun’ and other threats about, ‘You need to look over your back when you're walking.’” Cameron said.
Aliperti also told the boy he knew where he went to school, a move that caused police to step up patrols at RJO Intermediate School in Kings Park, News 12 Long Island reported.
“Mr. Aliperti did not directly threaten the school, but he did threaten the 11-year-old, stating he knew where he went to school, so that was good enough for us,” Cameron said.
The police chief said Aliperti was introduced to the boy through other teens who were playing the game. They had all been playing the game together for several months.
“To threaten an 11-year-old with harm, it’s just kind of shocking to me,” Cameron said, at one point telling reporters that Aliperti’s actions gave new meaning to the term “sore loser.”
Aliperti’s lawyer told News 12 the father of three children has no prior criminal record. He is in the middle of a contested divorce, the news station reported.
“Parents should be cautioned,” Cameron said. “You have no idea, unless you know exactly the other end of the game, who people are playing with.”
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