Visiting tourist Connor Golden, 18, had his left foot mangled after accidentally jumping onto a ‘homemade explosive’ in New York’s Central Park yesterday morning. Cops say the device was not made by terrorists and most likely a homemade firework saying that it was ‘not unusual’ for people to experiment with homemade explosives and fireworks around July 4. Cops believe the device was created just to
“make a loud noise, make a flash.“
The explosion occurred when Golden lept off a rock and landed on the device, which detonated. It had been placed in an area where “no-one would ordinarily step”. Golden had been looking for areas to slackline, which is similar to tightrope-walking. His friend Thomas Hinds said,
“I got down the hill and boom, my ears were ringing. I felt a wave, a gust hit me in the back. I turned around and saw him on the ground with his foot bleeding. It just demolished his foot.“
Witness John Murphy, 53, a tourist from Connecticut, told the New York Daily News he tried to keep the young man conscious following the explosion.
“The friends were just in shock. He was severely injured. His left leg was severely damaged, all bone and muscle. At first, I thought we were being attacked. It was a very loud explosion, and I couldn’t help but think of all the stuff in the news. That’s just what your mind automatically jumps to. But when I turned around and saw that [Connor] had stepped on something and was hurt, I went into shock. I realized that that could’ve been me. I went ahead first and the place where he stepped was inches away from where I was walking.”
He was an absolute trouper. I couldn’t believe it. We just stayed with him, tried to keep him calm until EMS showed up. He was in shock. I don’t think he even realized what had happened.“
Hinds told the New York Post,
“Connor is a really laid-back guy who really likes music and the outdoors. We love to go camping together, so on the fifth day of our trip, we were gonna head upstate to the Adirondacks for the weekend and then head home. But that’s all changed. Now, I just hope they can put his foot back together.“
He has undergone surgery at Bellevue Hospital and his condition is stabile.
Man Busted For Transporting $5,000 Worth Of Illegal Fireworks Into NYC
In a unrelated story, fire marshals confiscated a massive trove of fireworks and arrested the man who attempted to drive through the Holland Tunnel with them. Stephen A. Chapin, 38, was arrested Friday after he was caught trying to bring the Pennsylvania-bought explosives into Manhattan through the Holland Tunnel. The FDNY alleges that Chapin purchased rocket and mortar-style fireworks out of state, then loaded them into his Cadillac Escalade and covered them beneath blankets and plastic before driving back from Pennsylvania. Chapin’s contraband stash had an estimated value of $5,000.
Also, 21-year-old Queens man was arrested on Friday for selling roman candles, multi-shot mortars, and other illegal fireworks in plain view and last week, a New Rochelle man was picked up in Massachusetts for driving without a license and carrying 86 different kinds of illegal fireworks in his car.
Possessing and exploding fireworks in New York City is a crime and the Department claims that in recent years the Enforcement Unit has made over 200 fireworks-related arrests.