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APositiveElmo

Re: fun stuff

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I personally only see the problem with keeping their weapons in hands. That is a big no-no to me if you are really trying to escape a firefight zone and you're not involved. All the other things you listed can be purely accidental due to trying to get away from the site ASAP and avoiding getting shot.

  • React to shots and take evasive action - well I would hope they don't just stop and wait to be shot during a firefight
  • Put on identifying armbands - attempt to identify themselves as an external, not an involved party so they don't get shot
  • Call for the execution of a member of the defending party - that's surely metagaming? Nobody during firefight can possibly know that these two are involved in some kind of decision making on their radio while running away from the firefight
  • Start flanking a position of the defending after exclaiming that the defending party opened fire - that could be purely to try and escape the area. It's logical to not run straight into the direction where the shots are coming from, but flank around instead.

I have no clue about the actual situation, but that's my take based on what you've written. In the end all kills must be justified with valid kill rights. If there are no kill rights, the kill is invalid. Even if the person is NVFLing by intentionally running around the firefight area, risking their life. One rule break does not justify another.

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Now that appeals are done, I'm comfortable answering the query.

 

It was fairly straight forwards to determine the rule break. Did @Kordruga or @Conor have kill rights on Pepper and Duquesne? No they did not. That makes the kills invalid.

The next thing to be addressed, were the actions of @Duquesne and @Pepper enough to be considered NVFL? No, they were not. I'll explain that below.

 

Duquesne and Pepper did not run into an active firefight. The active firefight started around them.

We have a clear video that shows this. In the video if you watch it, you will hear at 4:15 gunfire from in front of Duquesne and Pepper, and from behind them. Watching the video you see he dips left and runs down the hill towards the water, not towards  either of the two immediate areas of gunfire behind him or in front of him. Knowing that they had potential 'enemies' behind them, Pepper and Duquesne went in the opposite direction of the known enemies in an effort to uninvolve themselves from the situation and figure out what was going on.

It is worth noting that at the point they run into Kordruga he is being chased down the hill towards them by infected and they have already run past his position, which lends more evidence to them not running directly at the gunfire. Neither one raised their weapons, and they greeted him with words and were met with bullets. Its also worth noting Duquesne was wearing a green armband, which is not the color of the people that initiated.

 

To address the points:

  • Keep their weapons drawn. - Agree. This was the biggest black mark, but in and of itself, given the context of their situation and their actions, does not constitute NVFL nor does it grant kill rights.
  • React to shots and take evasive action - This makes sense. They were not involved and had no information, nor did they get any over the radio. They took evasive action to get out of the situation until they were informed.
  • Put on identifying armbands - This is a merit point. They should have done this. It should have helped prevent them from being MIS-ID'd, but it clearly didn't work.
  • Call for the execution of a member of the defending party - This is not relevant to kill rights, and was not overheard in game so can not be used as justification by Conor and Kordruga to explain their invalid and attempted invalid kills. While it does lend evidence that they were aware of an issue with the Vultures/Kenneths people behind them, it still in and of itself  does not give kill rights. Had they actually had an ally to execute Kenneth, this would have been a rulebreak in and of itself obviously.
  • Start flanking a position of the defending after exclaiming that the defending party opened fire - While I understand how this could be viewed as flanking the defenders position, it was viewed by me as trying to get out of the situation. They had already passed the location of the shooting before turning around on seeing Kordruga coming towards them being chased by an infected. If they were flanking, Kordruga should have questioned why they were trying to talk to him instead of shooting him.

 

 

As Roland stated above, running around with guns out is the only fault I could assign in the situation to Pepper and Duquesne. However people have been misconstruing and trying to strawman this situation to other examples in the past, and I feel that is where most of the confusion has come from. It was my belief that the pair of them made a good faith effort to remove themselves from the active engagement. They were not loitering around the firefight, did not run back towards the known hostiles, and did not start shooting without ID'ing their targets.

This was a difficult verdict and situation. There is clearly a lot of OOC animosity involved in this situation, and a past history of it between certain community members in the report. These are not things that were taken into consideration during the verdicting process, but I am sure this played heavily into the turmoil this verdict has caused within the community. While it boils down to a simple question of 'Did they have rights?' there is obviously a lot of context in the situation. It is easy for us  to digest and process in hindsight with video evidence, but is much more difficult to process on the fly in the game. There was a very robust internal discourse about this particular verdict, and in the end we ruled it as we did.

 

The only regret I have is that I did not know beforehand I was allowed to reduce punishments below those shown in the standard punishment section. I would have 100% considered it due to the extenuating nature of this verdict if I had a second chance to take a crack at it. That is something I have learned about this situation through the appeals process, and I will carry that forwards.

 

I hope this helps to clear things up.

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Just for posterity's sake, I'd like to write here that Elmo and I have discussed the report, verdict, and appeals privately.

Thanks again for reaching out, and I'd encourage anyone else with questions to do the same.

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