Stunning footage shows daredevil scaling London's tallest building without a harness
An unidentified daredevil was caught climbing London's (and one of Europe's) tallest skyscraper early Monday morning, according to the Metropolitan Police.
"Police were called at 05:15hrs on Monday, 8 July following reports of a 'free-climber' on the Shard," authorities said on Twitter. "Emergency services attended and the man went inside the building where he was spoken to by officers. He was not arrested."
Footage of the stunt shows the man scale the 1,016-foot-high building and nearly reach its peak. A man who claimed to know the climber told the Mirror that the daredevil was able to clamber up the Shard by running over to the London Bridge Station, getting a "boost from someone" and pulling up onto it.
"He used a few suction cups at the start of it but was then climbing free solo," he said.
The morning feat drew negative reactions from Twitter users, some of whom criticized the police for not apprehending the man.
"These [adrenaline] junkies are only out for themselves," one person wrote. "Safe this time but the consequences of them falling would have been catastrophic to the public, witnesses and those emergency services that attended. We must stop cotton wool coating these people."
In an interview with the Telegraph, law enforcement attempted to explain its reasoning for not carrying out the arrest.
"The officers make case-by-case decisions when it comes to arrests, and they saw no arrestable offenses here," police sources said. "Of course that doesn't give people carte blanche to do what they like on London's buildings, and although it was judged that a criminal offense didn't take place, there may be a civil element between the owners of the building and the climber."
In a statement, a spokesperson from Real Estate Management, the company that operates the Shard, confirmed that it is considering legal action.
"Public safety and the security of the people who live, work and visit The Shard and the surrounding area is of paramount importance to us," the spokesperson said. "Fortunately no one was hurt by this dangerous activity and we are in dialogue about this matter with the Metropolitan Police and the other relevant authorities ... We will always push for a prosecution if it is clear that any law has been broken to maintain the ongoing safety of the area."