A Teenager Managed to Climb to the Top of the New World Trade Center Without Being Noticed

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
March 20 2014 3:34 PM

A Teenager Managed to Climb to the Top of the New World Trade Center Without Being Noticed

One World Trade Center (C) and the World Trade Center Transportation Hub (L) under construction in Lower Manhattan March 11, 2014 in New York.

Photo by STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images

The security at the not-yet-completed 1 World Trade Center was apparently no match for a 16-year-old daredevil.

Police arrested Justin Casquejo on Sunday for trespassing on the site, but not before he apparently made it to the roof and spent nearly two hours exploring the building. Authorities say they think the New Jersey teen entered the area through a small hole in the exterior fence shortly after 4 a.m. He then managed to make it to the top of the building without being noticed, at one point sneaking past a since-fired security guard who a Port Authority spokesman kindly described as "inattentive." It was only on his way back down that he was discovered by a construction supervisor and arrested around 6 a.m, according to ABC News.


Here's Casquejo's version of how he managed to make it all the way to the top of the 1,776 foot building, via USA Today:

Casquejo was quoted in the criminal complaint as telling the Port Authority police officer, "I walked around the construction site and figured out how to access the Freedom Tower rooftop. I found a way up through the scaffolding, climbed onto the 6th floor, and took the elevator up to the 88th floor. I then took the staircase up to 104th [floor]. I went to the rooftop and climbed the ladder all the way to the antenna."

Thanks to Casquejo's posts to his Twitter account, police believe Casquejo is big into what's known as parkour, an urban sport that involves scaling buildings and other structures. He was charged with one count of criminal trespass in the third degree and one count of trespass, according to the criminal complaint. He has since been released without bail.

Kelly Tunney is a Slate intern in New York City.


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