There's no shortage of people out there willing to risk life and limb by engaging in stupid stunts that usually have some connection to moving vehicles or gravity. The latest such stunt to garner attention in the Madison area is jumping from the roof of Monona Terrace and down 60 feet into the waters of Lake Monona. One week ago, two 19-year-old Monona men were caught in action.
As detailed in a press release issued by the MPD on August 15:
On August 9, at around 3:12 p.m., Madison Police were called to Monona Terrace to speak with a security guard. The guard said that two young men had just jumped from the top of the terrace into Lake Monona, and that a boat had picked them up. He further explained that young people jumping from the roof was an ongoing problem. He said this is very dangerous and he was concerned someone was going to get seriously hurt. Madison Police got a description of the "get-away" boat and contacted the Dane County Sheriff's Department Lakes Patrol. Deputies were able to locate the boat and the two jumpers. Both were cooperative and apologetic saying they would never do this again. The young men also indicated they got the idea for the stunt from a friend's My Space page. There are signs in the area of the jump site that state, "Danger No Trespassing Beyond Hand Rail." The signs also indicate that going beyond the rail is a violation of City Ordinance 23.07, which is the trespassing ordinance.Both men received a mere $424 ticket for breaking the ordinance.
Incredibly, two jumpers have actually shot a video of themselves taking the leap in July 2003 and have published it online, cavalierly naming themselves in the credits. This video clip -- ridiculously set to the Phillip Glass soundtrack from Requiem for a Dream -- follows below.
Obviously, this is an activity that anybody with a brain should avoid. As noted by multiple persons, the attention given to this crime may inspire copycats, but it's also clear that the police and Monona Terrace management want any would-be jumpers to know that they're watching.
More details about last week's incident and the general issue of the stunt jumping from the lakeside convention center can be found in an article published in today's State Journal, with further discussion ongoing in TDPF.