1 World Trade Center base jumpers plead not guilty, release new video
The men behind last year’s base jump off of from 1 World Trade Center pleaded not guilty in a Manhattan court on Tuesday.
Earlier this year, Marko Markovich, 27, Andrew Rossig, 33, Kyle Hartwell, 29, and James Brady, 32, were charged with burglary, reckless endangerment and jumping from a structure.
Soon after the hearing, their attorney described the charges as incommensurate with their crime, with them facing up to seven years in prison on the burglary charge alone.
“These felony charges are a significant stretch of the law to punish these guys more significantly for political reasons,” attorney Timothy Parlatore said, referring to the criticism levied against security measures at 1 WTC.
Parlatore said he hoped prosecutors would lessen the charge into a misdemeanor and argued that no similar arrests he is aware of have ever included such a steep charge.
Authorities searched for the group behind the stunt in the early morning hours of Sept. 30, but didn’t catch them until March 24, after the men released video of their illegal feat.
Video of the jump taken from helmet cameras shows Markovich, Rossig, and Brady atop the building and gliding more than 1,300 feet onto the ground. Hartwell allegedly was on the ground as a lookout.
The group released a second video of the jump on Monday ahead of the trial, asking viewers to donate to their legal defense, as well as for “to effectuate future legislative change to legalize B.A.S.E. jumping.”
The men are expected in court again on June 24.
Follow Chester Jesus Soria on Twitter @chestersoria