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YouTube prankster, 17, sparks police response after filming himself climbing NYC's Queensboro Bridge


YouTube prankster, 17, sparks traffic delays and huge police response after live-streaming himself climbing NYC’s Queensboro Bridge

  • Social media star ‘Smooth Sanchez’, 17, live-streamed himself climbing the Queensboro Bridge on Thursday afternoon
  • The stunt prompted NYPD officers to shut down several lanes of peak-hour traffic as they tried to negotiate with the teen 
  • Officers eventually had to scale the structure to retrieve Sanchez as thousands of viewers watched live on the Twitch app 
  • Sanchez was escorted to hospital for a psychiatric evaluation, but he told cops he simply wanted to create viral content
  • He may now face criminal trespassing charges, punishable by up to 15 days in prison

A YouTube prankster has caused traffic chaos after he live-streamed himself scaling New York City’s Queensboro Bridge because he ‘wanted to take content to the next level’

The 17-year-old social media star, known as ‘Smooth Sanchez’, climbed the bridge around 4 pm on Thursday, prompting a massive NYPD response. 

Officers subsequently shut down several lanes of peak-hour traffic as they tried to negotiate with the teen to come down from the structure, all as he filmed the event for thousands of viewers on the app Twitch. 

Sanchez’s video shows he climbed the bridge without a harness and with his phone in hand. 

‘I could really fall through these cracks, but it would be a worthy death,’ the teen told his followers, in a desperate bid for viral fame. 

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YouTube prankster Smooth Sanchez, 17,  caused traffic chaos on Thursday as he live-streamed himself scaling New York City's Queensboro Bridge because he 'wanted to take content to the next level'

YouTube prankster Smooth Sanchez, 17,  caused traffic chaos on Thursday as he live-streamed himself scaling New York City’s Queensboro Bridge because he ‘wanted to take content to the next level’

Officers subsequently shutdown a lane of peak-hour traffic as they tried to negotiate with the teen to come down from the structure

Officers subsequently shutdown a lane of peak-hour traffic as they tried to negotiate with the teen to come down from the structure

The teen's recording went on for more than an hour as viewers donated money via the Twitch app on which he was streaming

The teen’s recording went on for more than an hour as viewers donated money via the Twitch app on which he was streaming 

An onlooker captured this dramatic image of officers scaling the bridge in order to bring Sanchez down

An onlooker captured this dramatic image of officers scaling the bridge in order to bring Sanchez down 

Police quickly responded to calls from drivers who noticed Sanchez scaling the structure in jeans and sneakers. 

At first officers believed he may be suicidal, but Sanchez quickly clarified the situation as he spoke to them while standing up on the bridge.

‘I was just doing this for fun,’ he yelled down to the cops on the ground. 

‘My comedy is edgy, and I just wanted to get a better view.’

In the video, frustrated motorists can be heard honking their horns as Sanchez’s stunt brings traffic to a complete standstill. 

Sanchez continued to stay up on the bridge as fans donated money to his account via the Twitch app. 

Eventually, several officers donned harnesses and began climbing the bridge in a bid to retrieve the teen. 

Sanchez was not taken into custody, but was instead escorted to a hospital for a psychiatric evaluation, according to CBS

Sanchez was not taken into custody, but was instead escorted to a hospital for a psychiatric evaluation, according to CBS

‘Wow, it’s really not that hard. You don’t need rope, you know,’ he joked with the officers. 

The teen eventually ended his live-stream as he was brought back down to the ground by cops. 

However, he shared a message directly with viewers before his camera cut out, stating: ‘Mom, if anybody in my family is watching this, access all these donations through my PayPal, if I do get arrested. 

‘Ask the officers for my phone if I get arrested.’

However, Sanchez was not taken into custody, but was instead escorted to a hospital for a psychiatric evaluation, according to CBS. 

However officers say he could now face criminal trespass charges for the offence, which is punishable by up to 15 days jail. 

Officers say Sanchez could now face criminal trespass charges for the offence, which is punishable by up to 15 days jail

Officers say Sanchez could now face criminal trespass charges for the offence, which is punishable by up to 15 days jail

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