Sixth street bridge Los Angeles death: 17-year-old dies while allegedly performing social media stunt
A 17-year-old teenager died in Los Angeles after he slipped while climbing the new LA bridge for an alleged social media stunt. The boy's body was found at the 6th Street Viaduct on Saturday, May 20, 2023, by the police and rushed to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead.
LA Police Chief Michel Moore stated that he "slipped and fell off" while documenting himself climbing the arches "in order to post, apparently, a social media broadcast," at a Los Angeles Police Commission meeting held on May 23.
He added that the location has become an attractive spot for influencers performing dangerous stunts for online "clout-chasing" since its opening last July.
According to Los Angeles Daily News, the boy was rushed to the L.A. County USC Medical Center. However, the victim's name and what social media platform he used were not revealed in order to maintain privacy.
Some news media have reported that the teenager's name was Anthony Luna and added that his family has challenged the claims of 'social media stunt gone wrong' as a cause of his death.
The teenager is not the first victim of such an incident at the new LA bridge
The bridge was a $588 million undertaking, running over the concrete-lined LA River that connects downtown with its historic Eastside. Spanning about 3,500 feet, it replaced an older Art-Deco-themed structure. The location offers spectacular views of the Los Angeles skyline.
The structure is the largest and most expensive one to be built in the city and was listed as one of the city's historic landmarks soon after its opening. Owing to these factors, it is a hotspot for locals and tourists alike.
Law enforcement authorities had to shut down the bridge several times in the past as the structure drew negative attention in equal measure, including street racing, graffiti, and illegal takeover by spectators who came to watch drivers perform dangerous stunts.
In the Police Commission meeting, Moore highlighted this stating:
"Tragically we see that location, while it has spawned a great deal of pride in Los Angeles, it has also unfortunately served as a backdrop now for tragedies such as this..."
The teen is unfortunately the third person to die at the bridge in the 10 months it has been open. The victims include a man who was fatally shot on a pedestrian ramp while illegally filming a music video earlier this year.
Additionally, several influencers have taken to filming their "stunt videos" on the structure. Last year, a man was seen getting a haircut in the middle of the lanes on the bridge just days after its opening.
Police Chief Michel Moore stated that LAPD has increased patrol in and around the structure to "counter such reckless actions."
No other comments were seen in relation to the incident.