“Turns out its (sic) way harder to strangle someone to death than it looks on the movies” read the message accompanying morbid photos of a murdered middle-aged woman, posted to 4chan.
Naturally there was doubt and calls of “pasta,” meaning old photos sourced from the internet, from other posters. Usually, they are right. But this time the poster was adamant. “Check the news for (sic) port Orchard Washington in a few hours. Her son will be home from school soon. He’ll find her, then call the cops. I just wanted to share the pics before they find me. I bought a bb gun that looks realistic enough. When they come, I’ll pull it and it will be suicide by cop. I understand the doubts. Just check the f**king news. I have to lose my phone now.”
Sure enough, hours later, news broke of a body discovered eerily exact to how the anonymous poster described it, right down to the son discovering the body. Except the killer wasn’t there with his bb gun. Instead he stole her car — a gold 2001 Ford Focus, license plate 495-YLY, and is on the run.
Police are now crawling all over 4chan for clues to his location, but so far, nothing. Such is the nature of a site that started off innocently as a posting hub for anime and wound up as the most dangerous website on the internet.
This isn’t the first time that legitimate and would-be killers have posted commentary to 4chan — last year, a man posted that he was going to shoot up a shopping mall. Fifteen minutes later, he did. And with the maliciousness and anonymity fostered on the site, it won’t be the last time murderers go there to boast.
So what’s the endgame on social responsibility? Does it exist? Does 4chan manufacture monsters? Or is it unfairly afflicted with psychopaths being drawn to its “anything goes” mentality?