Two men who over social media threatened gun violence at the Pokemon World Championships in Boston face firearms possession charges in Boston, the Christian Science Monitor reports. Kevin Norton and James Stumbo of Iowa were stopped from entering Boston's Hynes Convention Center Thursday after the venue's security staff alerted police. The incident reflects the growing value of social media to law enforcement as a means to catch criminals as well as to connect with communities. The International Association of the Chiefs of Police says about 80 percent of police agencies report social media has helped solve crimes.
In the last two weeks, police have used social media to help find a stolen Playstation in Virginia, arrest a murder suspect in Dothan, Al., and live-stream traffic stops in Fargo, N.D. In Boston, social media played a significant role in police monitoring of and communication with protesters involved in the Occupy movement in 2011 and 2012. The Boston Police Department began amplifying its presence on social media after the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013. Today, the department has four officers running its social media accounts.