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After 22-year-old Mamoudou Gassama, an undocumented immigrant from Mali, scaled a building in Paris to save a child who was dangling off a balcony, people across the world heralded the “Spider-Man of the 18th” for his bravery. Reports rightfully focused on Gassama’s courageous act, but no one quite understood how the boy he rescued ended up there in the first place.
CNN reported Tuesday that the 4-year-old was left home alone while his dad went out shopping. On his return home, the dad became distracted by a game of Pokémon Go. Meanwhile, the child was hanging from a balcony after falling two stories from their apartment.
This is not the first time Pokémon Go has led to disastrous consequences for its players. Since its debut in 2016, the game has caused numerous accidents, injuries, and, in some cases, deaths.
With the boy now in the care of French authorities, his father is now facing up to two years behind bars and a $35,000 fine, the punishment for failing one’s legal duty as a parent in France. The child’s mother is reportedly moving to Paris in June to help raise him.
Gassama, for his heroic act of climbing several stories to save the child from the balcony, has been rewarded with an offer for French citizenship and a job with the Paris fire brigade.
Kristina Nguyen is an editorial intern for the Daily Dot. She is studying journalism and American studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She has previously contributed to Orange magazine and Silk Club's QUIET! zine.