Back in September, Dan Goodwin aka SpiderDan, was arrested for using suction cups to scale the San Francisco Millennium Tower. Yes, that same Millennium Tower that we’ve written about on several occasions, including the City Residences, Residences, and Grand Residences.
His trial for three misdemeanor charges started last Thursday. He is charged with being a public nuisance, delaying or obstructing arrest, and trespassing. He claims he is fighting the charges to bring awareness to skyscraper safety issues, and points out that his arrest at the top of the Millennium Tower was delayed because firefighters had to wait for the building’s security manager to provide bolt cutters. (which seems kind of strange, I just assumed firefighters would have their own bolt cutters, but apparently not).
San Francisco Fire Battalion Chief Charles Crane, who was one of the witnesses called to the stand, also testified that their rescue ladder only reached to the seventh floor of the building. Which isn’t exactly reassuring if you happen to be on the 8th floor, much less the 54th or 59th floor.
That said, I think that this is a ridiculous show trial, and I’m not sure why the city of San Francisco is using its precious and limited funds to pursue misdemeanor charges against SpiderDan when we frequently look the other way when homeless people defecate on streets, assault pregnant women in residential neighborhoods, or walk around town with their “borrowed” shopping carts.
I don’t want to sound like I’m on a rant against the homeless in San Francisco, but I am trying to point out that in the context of all that ills and challenges my favorite city in the world, a professional climber climbing the Millennium Tower seems like a pretty ridiculous use of limited resources. What are your thoughts? Not just about his ascent of the Millennium Tower, but also the ensuing trial, and the concerns he raises about skyscraper safety?