GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE - The Golden Gate Bridge District has sued two young men from Wisconsin who scaled the iconic bridge during their spring break, doing flips and walking on top of the 750-foot walkways in the dark, all of which was captured in a video and posted on YouTube, now being used as evidence.
The lawsuit, first reported by the Marin Independent Journal, alleges that Peter Kurer, aka Peter Teatime, and his buddy, Thomas Rector, trespassed, and caused a nuisance, unjust enrichment and unfair business practices when they climbed up the vertical suspension ropes on the north tower in April. They put their video on YouTube on May 7, and sold the rights to Caters Clips.
"The Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District has filed a lawsuit against the two men who illegally climbed the Bridge for personal profit and gain," Golden Gate Bridge Deputy General Manager Steve Miller, said in a statement. "The climbers put themselves and others in danger. We take security very seriously at the Golden Gate Bridge and those who break the rules will face consequences."
The lawsuit also seeks an injunction barring the pair from the bridge for purposes other than normal travel, and an injunction prohibiting dissemination and exploitation of video and recordings. The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages and legal costs.
“‘Peter Teatime’ and his associate Rector senselessly put the lives of themselves and others in serious jeopardy to exploit the San Francisco Bay Area’s most iconic landmark for their own publicity, expand their own Internet and social media presence, and achieve fame and, relatedly, monetary profit,” Kimon Manolius, a lawyer for the bridge district wrote.
“In media interviews, Kurer has not only candidly admitted to these crimes, but brags about his stunts, as well as his expertise in circumventing sensors, security cameras, and safety mechanisms,” Manolius wrote.
Teatime did not immediately respond to KTVU on Friday for comment. But in May, he said in a phone interview that he and his friend, both experienced climbers, were in town for spring break and they just “had to do it.”