Social media influencer and motivational speaker Matt Manzari is facing federal charges for a social media stunt where he walked on geothermal features in Yellowstone National Park.
Manzari is scarred from serious burns that he suffered when a power line sent 14,000 volts of electricity coursing through his body back in 2014.
The social media stunt, which played on Manzari’s scarring, was filmed as a joke for viewers to imply that he had just taken dip in one of Yellowstone boiling geothermal waters.
He did not jump into the water, but he can be seen walking off the designated boardwalks which is a violation of Yellowstone National Park rules.
Manzari commented on his original video, which has since been deleted, that “The general public should never do this without permission!”. This statement implies that Manzari had special permission, which he did not.
You can watch the video below:
All Yellowstone visitors are prohibited from leaving the designated boardwalks in and around the geothermal features. This is for their own safety, and to preserve the delicate ecosystem.
What might have seemed like a harmless self-deprecating joke was actually a violation of Yellowstone National Park rules, and warranted a court appearance in Yellowstone’s U.S. District Court via Zoom on Monday, August 29th.
The details of his sentencing have not been released as of the writing of this article. Here’s hoping he gets a hefty fine for his stupidity.