Aussie Festival-Goer Dies After Reality-TV Inspired Prank
An Australian festival-goer died in the UK, after two music festival security guards allegedly handcuffed and dumped him far away from the festival site, in a prank inspired by reality show “I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here”.
Reports The Age, 32-year-old Paul Wickerson was at the Brownstock music festival in Essex in 2013, when two security guards allegedly ejected him from the site and dumped him about 6 kms away to see if he could find his way back “for sport”, a court heard.
The prank, referred to as a “bush tucker trial”, is said to have been inspired by reality show “I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here”, where contestants undertake a variety of tasks in order to win food.
It is believed Wickerson was killed about 15 minutes after he was dumped when he was hit by several cars. The court heard that Wickerson was under the influence of drugs at the time, believed to be cocaine, LSD and ketamine.
“He was clearly the worse for wear because of the drugs. It was done for sport, to see if he could make his own way back,” Prosecutor Andrew Jackson told the Chelmsford Crown Court in the UK.
Security guards Brian Atkins, 49, and Gregory Maxwell, 32, are on trial facing charges of false imprisonment and kidnap.
The 2013 festival featured acts like Mark Ronson, Professor Green and Tom Odell.
The deputy director of Brownstock, Adam Brown, confirmed to the the jury he had seen staff handcuffing a topless festival-goer, believed to have been Mr Wickerson, and then driving him off in a Land Rover.
“I believe they put handcuffs on him with his hands behind his back. There was a lot of struggling but I definitely saw handcuffs on him,” he said. “They then carried him back to the service road.”
The trial is expected to continue for another two weeks.