Anti-abortion protester arrested after scaling Oklahoma City building
OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – An anti-abortion protester from Las Vegas was arrested Tuesday after he climbed nearly 800 feet to the top of Oklahoma City’s Devon Tower.
Maison Des Champs, also known as ‘Pro-life Spiderman’ began his climb at around 8 a.m.
A 911 call was made to Oklahoma City Police just after 8:40 a.m. where they were told there was a “subject climbing up the side of the building.” According to Capt. Valerie Littlejohn of the Oklahoma City Police Department, officers arrived on the scene minutes later to begin setting up safety measures.
“It’s really hard to do, given the height of the building, obviously with the ladders and other things that maybe the fire department can’t put into play because of the height of the building. So just having the street shut down, trying to have people in place to take him and make sure he’s okay and get him off safely from the building when he reaches a point where we can do that,” added Littlejohn.
Devon Tower is Oklahoma’s tallest building – it has 50 floors and the height of the roof is 844 ft.
By the time firefighters arrived, Des Champs had already reached the tenth story, just beyond the reach of the department’s ladders.
“We set up a unified command system with the police department, working closely with them. We did put guys on the roof, we had guys on the floor trying to communicate with him as he was climbing, trying to tell him the safest route and the safest possible way to go,” said Oklahoma City Fire Department Capt. Scott Douglas.
After an hour and a half of anticipation and guidance from the fire department, Des Champs was safely assisted from the railing of the northwest side of the tower by firefighters.
As Des Champs was pulled from the ledge, he was met with handcuffs by Oklahoma City officers.
Des Champs was arrested just before 10 a.m. on charges of disorderly conduct and trespassing. He was taken to the Oklahoma County Detention Center where he waited nearly eight hours for his processing to be finalized.
According to Capt. Littlejohn, the disorderly conduct charge was later dropped, meaning Des Champs was only charged with trespassing. His bond was set at $500.
Once released, Des Champs spoke with Nexstar’s KFOR about why he scaled Devon Tower.
“I climbed it to raise money for a charity called Let Them Live. We’ve adopted a mom named Riley. And so, what Let Them Live is going to do is they’re going to try to pay for housing or health care and then help her get a job so that she doesn’t have to get an abortion,” said Des Champs.
Des Champs has pulled this stunt before as he has climbed tall buildings before in San Francisco, New York, Detroit, and Las Vegas.
When asked if he felt as if his climb was a “waste of city resources,” he said, “It’s a growing movement. But, you know, I could help them come up with a plan that would be better, I guess, save resources.”
Des Champs may be seen climbing again, but for now, he said his lawyer recommends he not disclose information about when or where.