One arrested after two people BASE jump off of downtown high-rise
Published Friday, December 27, 2013 11:07AM MST
Last Updated Friday, December 27, 2013 7:00PM MST
Police are investigating after two individuals were seen leaping off of a downtown condominium high-rise under construction, and parachuting down to the ground Thursday evening.
Security at the Pearl Tower, a 36-storey condo building under construction on Jasper Avenue and 102 Street spotted the two BASE jumpers Thursday evening.
Officials said as the two people headed to the top floors of the building, their movements tripped security cameras – which alerted security personnel to the building.
Security arrived to find one man parachuting down, and they caught up to him as the man was putting the parachute in his jacket.
CTV News was there when a man was taken away by police from the scene, later, police said a 34-year-old man had been charged with trespassing, and it’s believed the second suspect fled.
This is the second time individuals have been seen BASE jumping off of the downtown building – back in August, three people were charged with trespassing after allegedly jumping off of the building.
It’s not clear if the two incidents are linked – officials with the security company at the Pearl Tower said such jumps happen often in the Edmonton area, and it’s something a local professional skydiver agrees with.
“It is way more common than people think,” Aidan Walters said.
“I don’t think it’s crazy like the media and police try to portray it.”
BASE jumping, or parachuting from a stable surface, not an airplane, is not illegal – but accessing a place to jump from can be.
“Obviously it poses a risk to the public,” EPS Insp. Chad Tawfik said. “Depending on traffic and other variables that come into play…so that causes us some concern.”
Walters doesn’t support trespassing, but said thrill-seekers shouldn’t have to resort to breaking the law to get an adrenaline rush.
“It’d be safer if it was legal, but because they want to control everything and prevent us from doing stuff, it becomes more of an issue,” Walters said.
The developer of the building, and the security company, wouldn’t comment on the incident.
Trespassing is not a criminal offence, but a charge comes with a $287 fine.
With files from Dan Grummett