Microsoft offers reward for missing boy

Filed under: Teens, In The News, Toys, Gadgets

Steve Crisp probably thought he was doing the right thing by exercising a little tough love on his Xbox-addicted son. Since 13-year-old Brandon had begun playing "Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare" online, his father had noticed some changes in him - like skipping school, stealing money and letting his schoolwork slide. So, on October 13, dad decided that enough was enough and took the boy's Xbox console away. Brandon did not take it well and hopped on his bike and left his Barrie, Ontario home. He hasn't been heard from since.

Since then, an exhaustive search has failed to turn up any clues other than Brandon's abandoned bicycle, discovered last week with a flat tire. Even a US $19,500 reward offered together by a local newspaper, the family's Internet service provider and Child Find has yet to lead to any good information regarding Brandon's whereabouts.

The police are examining just who Brandon was playing with online and has contacted the game's manufacturer, Microsoft, to help uncover that information. Microsoft is not only cooperating in the investigation, but has doubled the cash reward by putting in their own US $19,500. "Like everyone, we are deeply worried about the disappearance of Brandon Crisp," a company spokesperson said.

Steve Crisp says he had no idea that losing his Xbox would be so traumatic for his son. "This had become his identity, and I didn't realize how in-depth this was until I took his Xbox away. That's like cutting his legs off. This is such an issue that hits every parent out there, with video games that are starting to control our kids' lives," he said.

I really feel for this family. Brandon wasn't doing anything different from what thousands of other kids his age do each and every day. And yet he has been missing for over two weeks because he was forced to stop doing it.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.