Police: Use caution with Pokemon Go app

"Pokemon Go" was released four days ago
Posted at 5:32 PM, Jul 10, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-10 18:52:02-04

CALEDONIA -- A word of caution about a wildly popular new game app.

"Pokemon Go" was released just four days ago and it's already caused problems for some players.  Several times since Wednesday, armed robbers in Missouri lured players through the app. Nothing like that here, but local officers are telling players to be careful.

Maddy Lukkes thinks of it as a healthy addiction, getting couch potatoes outdoors.
"And lately I see them go walking and on their phones, like oh wow, we're actually getting outside and actually doing things," Lukkes said.
What they're doing is finding Pokemon in the real world.
"They go into your Pokedecks and then you can evolve and battle later on at Pokemon training centers," one player said.
Turns out the IHOP across from Regency Mall is what they call a Pokestop. When we arrived we were rewarded three Pokeballs.
The game uses your smartphone camera and makes it look like the Pokemon are right there, but that's how problems can happen.
"If you live in the game, your head's down, you can become a target. You can easily become a victim," said Caledonia Police Sergeant Jim Gardiner.
Even walking can be dangerous, for someone staring at their phone.
"I was trying to catch an Odish a couple nights ago and I like ran into a bush. That wasn't fun."
Worse yet are the drivers who are playing the app.
"Pull over if you've got to send a message. Pull over if you've got to make a phone call and definitely pull over if you've got to play Pokemon. You don't want to be playing Pokemon in traffic," Gardiner said.