MACKINAW CITY, MI – Someone climbed the Mackinac Bridge, snapped photos and then posted them to social media last month. Now, he could face felony charges.
The Mackinac Bridge Authority is calling the stunt “inexcusably reckless.”
This person risked his own life and put people crossing the bridge in danger, said MBA executive secretary Kim Nowack. If a rescue had been needed, the lives of emergency personnel and bridge staff would have been also been at risk.
A bridge alarm was activated one morning in early November, but staff couldn’t determine what triggered it, according to a news release from the Michigan Department of Transportation. Several hours later, another alarm went off and a person was seen leaving the bridge. Local police were called to investigate but couldn’t find the individual.
Bridge authority staff later became aware of photos taken from atop one of the bridge towers that were posted to social media, the release said. It is believed the photos are from the early November trespassing incident.
Michigan State Police is investigating the incident. The suspect could be charged with felony trespassing at a key transportation facility, said MSP Detective Sgt. Gary Demers of the St. Ignace Post. The charge is punishable by up to four years in prison, a fine of up to $2,500, or both.
MSP is committed to using all its resources “to identify and prosecute this individual,” Demers said.
MDOT Director Paul C. Ajegba has instructed the bridge authority to conduct a review and implement measures to prevent future trespassing.
“It is very troubling that someone would put their own life at risk, not to mention that of others, just for photos and thrills on our state’s signature bridge,” Ajegba said.
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