The phrase/term "Violent Video Games"
used to be the default 'probable cause' for news media reporting on random acts of violent crime, specifically shootings, where the perpetrator had no obvious link to the victims. In recent years, the increased threat of international terrorism, has somewhat superseded this, as first assumption.
Whilst they are two different explanations, the trait they both share, at a neurological level at least, is some form of abnormal/radicalised mental state. (If we presume these actions are not the actions of a sane mind).
Now I'm a big fan of Freakonomics
so 'causality' naturally fascinates me, and whilst it may be possible to evidence a particular person's steps down the path of radicalised terrorism, the leap in logic from simply playing a game called 'Grand Theft Auto' to actually committing a crime of 'Grand Theft Auto' is huge.
'Grand Theft Auto V' was a phenomenally successful release for Rockstar Games
shifting a massive 11 million copies in its first 24 hours alone, and, as of February 2016 - a total of 60 million copies worldwide
. I'm sure you've probably figured out where I'm going with this massive CLANG
of such a drop of statistics. All 60 Million of us are (thankfully) not mass murderers.
This whole meandering post can be summed up by two key points:
Violence is everywhere, if desired, one can consume it on every type of media, on every platform; Movies, TV, Games, even Books.
Does the element of physical interaction and tangible control of violence in video games, somehow elevate its influence on us?
Such terrible, tragic atrocities as the one mentioned in the original post, are (arguably) committed by people who have a very altered perception of reality and society. Even if the person(s) involved had played violent games, the extent to which this single factor had, in relation to an infinite amount other possible factors, is pretty impossible to quantify.
Disclaimer: I have precisely zero qualifications in psychology.
Just my 2 cents...
(I have only just realised the irony of my username in this whole situation)