Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Base jumpers arrested for parachuting off WTC (video)

Four New Yorkers turned themselves in yesterday for a BASE-jumping stunt off the new World Trade Center on September 30th of last year.

They sneaked through a hole in a fence and then climbed up the stairs to the top of the 1776 foot tall tower. They said they encountered no security at all.

James Brady, 32, of Kings Park, NY, along with Long Islanders Marko Markovich, 27, Kyle Hartwell, 29, and Andrew Rossig, 33, each were charged with third-degree burglary, a class-D felony; second-degree reckless endangerment, a class-A misdemeanor; and jumping from a structure, also a class-A misdemeanor.

Markovich is a sky-diving instructor. Brady was a construction worker on the 1 World Trade Center site. Hartwell didn’t make the jump but assisted by providing lookout duty on the ground.

At the time, bystanders and police spotted the jumpers on their way to the ground but couldn’t stop them before they got away. Police investigated the jump, searching Markovich’s home a month ago and finding the footage of the stunt on a camera. It’s not clear what evidence led investigators to the perpetrators.

“Living the dream, dude. Have a safe jump. Get away in one piece,” one of the jumpers can be heard saying on the video. “Thank the f***ing dear lord that we made it here this far. He’s going to watch out for us tonight,” he goes on.

It’s a good rule of thumb that if you’re using the f word in a prayer, you’re probably doing something wrong.

The arrests follow 16-year-old Justin Casquejo’s climb to the tower’s spire last week. Casquejo snuck up WTC to take pictures and was nabbed on the 104th floor after being up there for two hours.

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