Mayor Bill de Blasio and Port Authority officials were anything but amused that a New Jerey teen snuck his way to the top of One World Trade Center.
Justin Casquejo, 16, allegedly avoided an inattentive guard and took pictures at the 104th floor of the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere before he was caught around 6 a.m. Sunday, according to PA police.
When asked about the incident after it made headlines Thursday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said the stunt was “shocking and troubling.”
“At least I can say from media reports they there were obviously consequences for some of the people involved who made mistakes,” he told reporters.
Casquejo, who is from Weehawken, was released on his own recognizance by Manhattan prosecutors after they arraigned him on trespassing charges. His Legal Aid attorney could not be reached for immediate comment.
Casquejo mentioned the incident several times with his friends on his Twitter page, which includes a picture of him on top of a high rise scaffolding. At one point he gave a shoutout to his parkour team and retweeted his friend’s tweets with the hashtag freejustin.
On March 18, he tweeted a picture of John Lennon that had the Beatle’s quote, “It’ll be okay in the end, if it’s not okay it’s not the end.”
Port Authority investigators, however, say the incident was not a joke.
Police say he climbed a 12 x 12 opening in the exterior fence surrounding the tower and got onto the premises.
“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],” the boy allegedly told a PA Officer, according to the criminal complaint.
The PA said it fired the “inattentive” officer who was on the 104th floor and reviewing its security.
“We are constantly working to make this site as secure as possible,” Joseph Dunne, the chief of security for the Port Authority, said in a statement.
A source close to the investigation said Casquejo entered the building around 4 a.m. and was inside for at least two hours before he was caught.
Officers confiscated a cellphone and a camera that were on him and investigators are searching to see if there was anything compromising on either device, according to the source.