BROOKLYN — The French tourist who climbed onto a Brooklyn Bridge beam Sunday afternoon was trying to capture a few photographs of the city's sweeping views — just hours before he was scheduled to fly back home, his lawyer told DNAinfo New York.
Yonathan Souid, 23, was charged with reckless endangerment, criminal trespassing and disorderly conduct after being arraigned in Brooklyn Criminal Court Monday afternoon.
“My client was just capturing some of New York’s beauty. He did not mean to cause the uproar to New York City,” his lawyer, James Medows said after Souid’s arraignment.
Souid, who is a student in France, was visiting friends in Crown Heights, according to his lawyer.
“[Souid] did not know about previous climbings on the bridge. He apologized for any scare he caused our great city,” Medows added.
The Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office charged Souid with a class A misdemeanor, according to Medows, which carries a maximum sentence of one year in jail.
“This defendant’s foolish and unlawful conduct is a breach of security and a danger to himself and others,” Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson said in a statement. “It will not be tolerated. This is not a game and we will be seeking jail time.”
A police officer spotted Souid on the beam after he scaled the bridge at about 12:30 p.m. Sunday afternoon on a beam “directly above vehicular traffic,” according to court papers.
After officers arrested Souid he told them he climbed the beam to take photographs, court papers show.
Souid was released on $15,000 bond after surrendering his passport and is due back to court on Dec. 9.
This is the third incident this year of people climbing onto secure areas of the bridge. The previous two breaches caused security concerns on the high-profile span.
A 24-year-old Russian tourist was arrested on Aug. 24 after climbing to the top of a bridge tower to snap a few iPhone photos.