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Author Topic: Mag Editor Helps Access  (Read 147 times)

Access

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Mag Editor Helps Access
« on: April 17, 2003, 08:39:51 AM »

From the NPS Morning Report 4/15/03

Joshua Tree National Park (CA)
Conviction for Arson, Vandalism of Natural Resources


Joshua Tree NP has historically been a popular gathering spot for outdoor enthusiasts during the Christmas and New Years holidays. During the 2002 holiday, all park campgrounds and facilities were full. While patrolling the Hidden Valley campground after dark on New Year,s Eve, rangers Tim Bertrand and Scott Fischer saw two people on a rock formation above the campground. After hearing the distinctive sound of a tin white gas container hitting the rock, they observed a large fire erupt on the face of the formation. When they identified themselves to the pair, both fled from the area. The rangers apprehended them as they climbed down the back of the formation. They were subsequently identified as Jonathan Thesenga and Erin Whorton. Both were cited for arson, with mandatory court appearances stipulated. Later in the evening, the two rangers were again patrolling the campground. They came across a site with a large fire and several people talking loudly. As the rangers approached the site, they recognized Thesenga and Whorton. Thesenga made several statements indicating that he had no remorse or understanding of what he had done. He stated several times that he planned on doing the same thing next year, and the he would also light several other fires. Thesenga also said that "as the editor," he was not supposed to do things like this. Several days later, the rangers discovered that Thesenga was the senior editor for Climbing Magazine, one of the top two publications on rock climbing. On April 4th, Thesenga and Whorton appeared in federal court. They appeared separately in front of the magistrate, and each pled guilty. Thesenga showed no remorse and did not apologize for his actions to the court. He was sentenced to five years, unsupervised probation, banned from entering the park for five years, and ordered to pay a $1,000 fine. The court also required him to provide copies of the rangers, report and the court proceedings to his employer and the magazine,s owner, the Primedia Corporation. Whorton showed remorse and apologized to the court and to the park staff present for her actions. She was sentenced to a $500 fine and three years, unsupervised probation and banned from entering the park for a period of three years.
[Submitted by Jeff Ohlfs, Acting Chief Ranger]
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Bryan

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Re: Mag Editor Helps Access
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2003, 08:57:21 AM »

There was also a bolt chopping incident with this same "gentleman".  I believe that was the last straw for climbing magazine.  They are know looking for his replacement ;D
 As far as I know he sought no contact with the first ascenders of the climbed he de-faced, and by chopping these bolts he has endangered climbers lives who attempted the climb shortly after.
Bryan
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Nsoice

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Re: Mag Editor Helps Access
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2003, 10:54:08 AM »

What route did the bolt chopping occur on? Was it in JTree also?

Thanks
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Bryan

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Re: Mag Editor Helps Access
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2003, 11:11:48 AM »

Go to Climb.com.  That's the climbing website.  They have all of the info there.  Hope that answers your question.
Bryan
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Nsoice

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Re: Mag Editor Helps Access
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2003, 11:20:06 AM »

Bryan,

Actually that does not answer my question. Climb.com is some confusing website. Climbing.com is the magazine's website with information about the incident in JTree which involved some white gas. You mention a bolt chopping incident. Where and when did this occur? Can you give me more specifics or a better description of where to find the info on Climb.com. Thank you.
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Edge

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Re: Mag Editor Helps Access
« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2003, 11:37:24 AM »

Here's a helpful link to all of the sordid mess.  You will find facts, half truths, sordid lies, accusations, and name calling; a veritable climber's version of "The Young and the Restless".

http://www.rockclimbing.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=15657&postdays=0&postorder=asc&topic_view=&start=0
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Nsoice

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Re: Mag Editor Helps Access
« Reply #6 on: April 17, 2003, 01:44:20 PM »

Thanks for the info. JT is a friend of mine. It's a bummer to see the online lynching on all these websites. What he did was stupid, but not totally "off the radar". A lot of people have done things that risk access to our various climbing resources. Most were not done in such a public way, but in the long run could have a similar effect. (Chipping, glueing, bolting, overcrowding) He made a mistake, using poor judgement. His five year probation, termination and fine are punishment. So while people will pile on with rumors, preaching and yapping about "lame this and lame that", please remember that we all make mistakes. In some ways, we all put our climbing resources at risk by using them so much. (e.g. Heuco Tanks) Hopefully, instead of lynching JT for a stupid stunt, we could concentrate on making sure we never endanger the resources we love so much.
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Admin Al

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Re: Mag Editor Helps Access
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2003, 07:39:30 PM »

it's a pretty weird thing to have happen. I've had some dealings with JT in the past year or so, and while I wouldn't count him as one of my frineds, I'm surprised that he would do something as stupid as he is being accused of. and those who are villifying Climbing Magazine for JT's conduct are definitely out of line here. I feel confident that it's not something that the staff and managment would approve of. people do stupid things sometimes, and if he in fact got the fine & was fired as I read on rec.climbing, I think that he has received his just due.  

Al
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Re: Mag Editor Helps Access
« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2003, 08:38:53 AM »

The story is at least somewhat true.  If you go to Climbing's homepage they confirm that he was arrested for arson and fired by the magazine.
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