An unidentified man is at this moment scaling Trump Tower in New York City. Equipped with giant suction cups, rappelling gear, and harnesses, he has managed to climb to the 11th floor and he continues his ascent.
He was first spotted around
3:40 2:45 p.m., (there are conflicting reports about the start time) and police have moved in, placing airbags below the climber. They’ve also broken out some windows, though it’s not clear why. A crowd has gathered below to watch the spectacle.
Watch the live feed below.
Check back for updates as more information becomes available.
Update 5:45 PM EST: From the New York Post:
The bearded, 20-something climber – dressed in high-end mountain climbing gear – started his ascent around 2:45 pm and by 5 pm had reached what appeared to be the 12th floor, a witness said.
Cops climbed through the building’s air conditioning vents to reach him, but he suctioned his way away from him.
At one point, a cop broke a window two floors over him and stuck his head out to talk to him.
“He keeps going,” said Gerald Iorio, who works across the street from the Fifth Avenue building, told The Post. “The cops can’t get him.”
He’s now approaching the 13th floor.
Update 5:51 PM EST: The climber apparently wants an audience with Trump. The Donald ought to appreciate the showmanship involved in this stunt.
— Mike Valerio (@MikeNBC12) August 10, 2016
Update 5:57 PM EST: Via Wikipedia, Trump Tower in NYC is 664′ tall and has 58 floors. It was completed in 1983 and is the 64th tallest building in New York City.
This is terrifying:
— Reuters Live (@ReutersLive) August 10, 2016
Update 6:21 PM EST: The airbags look like a big bouncy house.
— Good Morning America (@GMA) August 10, 2016
Also, Donald Trump is NOT at Trump Tower right now.
Update 6:29 PM EST: As entertaining as all of this is, it should be noted that there is a very serious element to it. Trump and his family are under Secret Service protection and Trump Tower is the location of the family’s home and also where Trump’s offices are located. This climber could have anything in that backpack, ranging from firearms to explosives. I’m surprised that police are hanging out the window, practically right on top of the guy. Perhaps they’ve determined that he is not a threat, but it seems like they won’t know for sure until they have him in custody.
Update 6:36 PM EST: The NYPD just moved in and took the climber into custody. Several officers basically just grabbed him by the arm and hauled him in the window.
— ABC News (@ABC) August 10, 2016
Here’s a better look at him:
— Audit The Media (@AuditTheMedia) August 10, 2016
Now the questions. Who is “Steve” and what did he want? How did he get to the 5th floor, where he reportedly began his ascent? Is the building secure enough to protect a presidential nominee? What can be done to prevent copycat climbers?