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Trump Tower climber avoids jail time with guilty plea

Stephen Rogata, who climbed Trump Tower last summer,

Stephen Rogata, who climbed Trump Tower last summer, will avoid jail time for his high-profile stunt. Photo Credit: Craig Ruttle

The 19-year-old Virginia man who scaled Trump Tower in August 2016 to talk to President Donald Trump pleaded guilty Monday, but skirted any jail time.

Stephen Rogata climbed the tower using large suction cups, changing course and avoiding police trying to pull him back into the building for hours.

Rogata pleaded guilty on Monday to second-degree reckless endangerment, a misdemeanor, and disorderly conduct, a violation.

Immediately after his climb, Rogata was hospitalized for a psychiatric evaluation and is ordered to continue mental health treatment, according to the Manhattan district attorney’s office.

As part of his plea, Rogata also needs to continue to either be in school or have a job, as well as not get arrested for one year.

Rogata must also stay away from trying to contact Trump in any way.

If he abides by these conditions, Rogata will be able to withdraw his guilty plea to the reckless endangerment charge.

Rogata, who was found with multiple IDs when he was pulled through an open window to safety, had changed his name from Michael Joseph Ryan and was recalled by those who knew him as a quiet guy who was on the debate team and part of the young Republicans club.

Shortly after his daring climb, a video was posted online showing a man who looked like Rogata, called “Message to Mr. Trump (why I climbed your tower).” The man said he climbed the tower to get Trump’s attention, and that he was “an independent researcher seeking a private audience with to discuss an important matter.”


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