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Watch: YouTuber Harasses the Wrong Guy, Finds Himself Gutshot After Refusing to Let Up

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There is, every once in a while, a court case that shines a light on a filthy corner of society so dysfunctional that, no matter how minor the players might be, it’s worth paying attention to. Such is the sorry tale of the shooting of Tanner Cook by Alan Colie in Virginia.

Cook is the 21-year-old behind a YouTube channel called “Classified Goons;” half that title is true, and you can probably guess which half it is by the fact we know his name.

By the evidence given on YouTube, this man has spent his one score and one year of life on earth wasting our carbon and oxygen so that he could build a modest following on social media pulling pranks like this:

WARNING: The following video contains graphic language that some viewers will find offensive.

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I hope you didn’t watch that whole thing, because that’s 11 minutes of time you’ll never get back.

Anyway, Cook was pulling a prank inside Dulles Town Center in Sterling, Virginia when he approached Colie, a 31-year-old DoorDash driver picking up an order. As part of the prank, Cook shoved a cell phone in Colie’s face; the phone was playing a nonsensical clip that, to this untrained ear, seems to be a computer-generated woman’s voice saying “You’re thinking about my twinkle;” WUSA-TV reported it was done via Google Translate. Meanwhile, one of Cook’s friends was recording from afar.

“The video shows Colie backing away from Cook, telling Cook to stop three times and trying to push the cellphone away from his face,” WRC-TV reported.

“After about 20 seconds, Colie pulled out a gun and shot Cook.”

Was this a justified shooting?

The injuries were nonfatal, obviously, but the footage is disturbing nonetheless:

WARNING: The following video contains graphic language that some viewers will find offensive.

Colie told the jury that he was frightened because both Cook and his friend looked “really cold and angry” and said he’d started carrying the gun because he’d seen reports about other food delivery drivers being targets of robberies.

“Colie walked into the mall to do his job with no intention of interacting with Tanner Cook. None,” said Adam Pouilliard, Colie’s attorney. “He’s sitting next to his defense attorneys right now. How’s that for a consequence?”

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The gutshot goon case divided opinion, both on social media and in the jury box. Prosecutors took the approach that “Colie took a gun to a cellphone fight,” according to WRC, while many felt that Cook had harassed a stranger in public and that he felt rightfully afraid.

The jury mostly sided with Colie, according to WUSA, returning a not guilty verdict on charges of aggravated malicious wounding or use of a firearm for aggravated malicious wounding.

He was, however, found guilty on a charge of malicious discharge of a firearm within an occupied dwelling. To be short, the jury found that he had a reasonable claim to self-defense in the situation but still shouldn’t have fired within a mall. The charge carries a potential 10-year sentence in prison.

Cook appeared with his mother outside Loudoun County Courthouse after the verdict — and as you can see, getting shot in the abdomen has made him no less of an odious twit:

Cook’s mother said she was “just grateful and thankful that I have my son here and nothing else matters right now.” Then, her son acted the fool in front of WUSA’s cameras and said that he would keep on making prank videos, with mom just laughing it off.

So, to start with, I’d say that yes, something else matters right now, and that’s the fact that what appears to be 21 years of failed parenting isn’t coming to an end even after her son got shot in the gut because he was menacing a DoorDash driver to rake in that sweet YouTube cash. (Which, by the way, accounts for up to $3,000 a month, according to WUSA.)

As for Cook’s message to those who might have a problem with his content, an unrepentant Cook said, “I dunno, I guess they’ll just have to keep watching.”

Was he disappointed in the verdict? In response to that, Cook brought out everyone’s favorite meaningless, tautological phrase and then invoked the Almighty: “I really don’t care. I mean, it is what it is,” Cook said. “It’s God’s plan at the end of the day.”

Look, I suppose if you believe in some form of Calvinist strict theological determinism, I guess you could say it was part of the Almighty’s plan for Cook to harass a DoorDash driver to get likes and clicks, and instead get shot in the process. However, even as someone who tends toward reformed theology, I’d still cast a skeptical eye on the idea that this was part of “God’s plan at the end of the day” any more than any act of sin or depravity is part of God’s plan at the end of the day.

Has Tanner Cook learned anything? No. If anything, he’s emerged more infamous than ever before — and, in his little world, infamous still counts as famous. (The word “famous” is in there, after all — and in a post-Kardashian era, what’s the difference?)

As for Colie, one is loath to recommend pulling a gun on someone who is harassing you in a minatory fashion, but this is the low-trust society we live in. The jury’s decision still leaves him on the look for less serious charges; according to the New York Daily News, a judge will hear arguments on that charge in a few weeks time.

Maybe part of “God’s plan” is for dim social media harassers who want to be the next Tanner Cook to look at this and be dissuaded — or for those who are menaced by these morons to show a soupçon of patience and restraint. As it stands now, however, this seems like Tanner Cook’s plan more than anyone else’s. And sadly, this is how it all ended.

Before it’s too late, perhaps our “Classified Goon” ought to consider the words of Proverbs 16: “The Lord has made everything for its purpose, even the wicked for the day of trouble. Everyone who is arrogant in heart is an abomination to the Lord; be assured, he will not go unpunished.”

That, Mr. Cook, is God’s plan. And as for his mother, I would suggest turning the Bible back a few pages to Proverbs 13: “Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.” Yeah, it’s a little late in the game, but stop laughing and start parenting, for heaven’s sake.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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