NEW YORK – Two people were taken into custody Thursday after separately scaling The New York Times building in Manhattan.
Alain Robert, known as the "French Spider-Man" was trapped by police shortly before 12:30 p.m. EDT after he deftly inched up the side of the Times Square high-rise, which houses the newspaper's relatively new offices.
Several hours later another man, who was not immediately identified, started climbing the building while a crowd gathered below. Police took him into custody shortly after 6:30 p.m.
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Robert had gone about 52 stories up before New York City Police caught him in a precarious recovery operation.
The 45-year-old had planned the stunt in honor of "World Environment Day," and invited reporters to a press conference first, then a chance to see how he climbs.
"I am climbing with my bare hands, as a PEACEFUL way to create support for far greater and urgent action from world leaders on global warming," Robert said in a press release he issued in advance. "Greenhouse gas emissions are still climbing. So am I!!!"
Robert has scaled between 70 and 85 large structures around the world, usually with only his bare hands and climbing shoes.
The second man wore a "Malaria No More" shirt, but a statement issued by the organization said he was not linked to them.
"The individual has no affiliation with our organization," the statement read. "While Malaria No More appreciates his enthusiasm for raising awareness about malaria, we are in the business of saving lives, not risking them."
Before the NYPD caught Robert, they declined to disclose whether they planned to arrest him, saying only that they were concerned about getting him down from the building at 41st Street and Eighth Avenue safely.
The Times reported the incident on its "City Room" blog.