The sun reflects off New York's One World Trade Center as
people stand in a park in Hoboken, New Jersey. REUTERS/Gary
A teenage boy was arrested after sneaking into One World
Trade Center, which is still under construction in New York
City and is the nation's tallest building, and ascending its
104 floors to the antenna.
Justin Casquejo, 16, of Weehawken, New Jersey, was carrying
his camera when he crawled through a small hole in the
construction fence encircling the World Trade Center site in
lower Manhattan shortly after 4am on Sunday morning, a
spokesman for the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey
He then clambered up scaffolding to enter the building, took
an elevator to the 88th floor and climbed stairs to the
tower's antenna, which rises 1,776 feet above the ground.
Joseph Pentangelo, a spokesman for the Port Authority, the
public agency that owns the building, declined to directly
address reports that the guard assigned to protect the
skyscraper's upper floors was asleep at the time.
"I'm going to characterize it as 'inattentive'", he said,
adding that the guard had since been fired.
Port Authority police arrested Casquejo inside the building
about two hours after he first entered, Pentangelo said.
Casquejo said on his Facebook page he was keen on the running
and jumping sport of parkour and posted pictures of himself
posing with the World Trade Center in the background, The New
York Post reported. His Facebook page appeared to have been
removed on Thursday morning.
Casquejo was charged with two counts of trespass and
arraigned on Monday before being released, according to the
Manhattan district attorney's office.
One count of criminal trespass in the third degree carries a
maximum sentence of 90 days in prison; one count of trespass
carries a maximum sentence of 15 days in prison.
Casquejo could not immediately be reached for comment. A
lawyer representing him declined to comment.
The Port Authority has spent millions of dollars on security
measures for the skyscraper, which is due to open later this
year and which replaces the Twin Towers that were destroyed
by Al Qaeda hijackers on Sept. 11, 2001.
Joseph Dunn, the Port Authority's chief security officer,
said in a statement that the agency takes security breaches
"We continue to reassess our security posture at the site and
we are constantly working to make this site as secure as
possible," the statement said.