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Friday January 21st, 2022
Crime

Sri Lanka police apprehend teen suspects behind TikTok murder

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka Police on Wednesday (05) arrested all six suspects linked to the murder of a 17-year-old Tiktoker in Sri Lanka.

The police media division said the six boys, aged between 12 and 17, are being questioned about the events leading up to the stabbing.

The suspects are residents of Colombo 15 and Dehiaththakandiya.

The victim was stabbed to death in Grandpass, Colombo, by one of the group following a tussle, while the victim and two friends were travelling to his aunt’s apartment in Randiya Uyana.

Related: Teenage boy in Sri Lanka stabbed to death over TikTok video

The TikTok account of the deceased, which previously had around 2,000 followers and 17,000 likes, has amassed over 4,000 followers and over 48,000 likes since the incident was reported. The numbers continue to go up dramatically in the wake of his death. The last three videos of the account, posted on the day of the victim’s death, have gone from 2,000 views to 54,000 views.

It is, however, unclear at present whether the murder was directly linked to the victim’s TikTok content. His mother has cast her doubt on the claim, though police have said they suspect a link.

Sri Lankan social media users have been dissecting the incident, with many expressing that the country must follow in India’s footsteps and ban TikTok entirely. Others have pointed out that the app itself is not to blame.

Regardless, TikTok has inadvertently been the cause in endangering lives. The “Blackout Challenge,” that involved users seeing how long they can hold their breath before passing out, ended up with the deaths of many children aged 9 to 11. The company revealed in September of 2021 that the app had over 1 billion monthly users.

Although TikTok has taken measures to minimise such dangerous viral challenges, incidents such as Sri Lanka’s stabbing are outside of their control, tech commentators say. (Colombo/Jan05/2022)

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