Earlier this week, Keith Ratliff, the producer of the highly popular YouTube channel FPS Russia, was found murdered and dumped on a rural back road. Ratliff worked mostly behind the scenes of the show, which was dedicated to showcasing exotic and high-power firearms. The show’s main character, Dmitri Potapoff, is played by Ratliff’s associate, Kyle Myers, who speaks in a rather unconvincing, yet amusing, Russian accent.
Initially, authorities in Georgia stated that Ratliff was found tied to a chair with a single gun shot wound to the back of the head and that multiple weapons were found in the same room. The latest information to be released, based on a local radio station report, states that his body was found on a rural road with weapons nearby, raising speculation that this was in fact a targeted murder.
‘For him not to pull out that gun and try to defend himself, he had to feel comfortable around somebody. Either that or he was ambushed,’ said Ratliff’s heartbroken widow, Amanda.
FPS Russia commands nearly 3.5 million YouTube subscribers, has over five-hundred million video views, and is listed as one of YouTube’s Top Ten most popular channels, raking in an estimated $45,000 – $137,000 in Google ad revenue since its inception in mid-2010.
The channel highlights expensive and exotic weapons, with Dmitri usually going overboard with explosives, fully-automatic gun fire, and women in bikinis. It is of little wonder why the channel is so popular, but many alternative news sources are beginning to publish the inevitable conspiracy theories that Ratliff was targeted for his gun views and large internet platform. While I have no doubts that the murder had something to do with firearms, I will wait for this story to pan out a little further or additional evidence to publicly surface before offering more opinion. Official details are being kept tight-lipped as authorities await an autopsy report.
Ratliff leaves behind a wife, Amanda, and a 2-year-old son, Keith.
Here is one of FPS Russia’s videos with a full-auto FAL.
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