NYTimes' 'Spiderman 3' Packs Political Point

Climber who reportedly penned Bin Laden book scaled skyscraper to 11th floor.

July 9, 2008— -- A Connecticut man climbed part way up The NewYork Times' 52-story headquarters early Wednesday, becoming thethird person to scale the futuristic skyscraper in less than fiveweeks.

The climber, identified by the Times as David Malone, made it tothe 11th floor of the building in midtown Manhattan beforedescending to a lower floor and spending hours making cell phonecalls and talking to police. He was arrested about 5:30 a.m.,police said.

Police said the climber was taken to Bellevue Hospital Centerfor evaluation; charges were pending.

At one point, the climber unfurled a banner on the "T" of theTimes' sign on its building that referred to Osama bin Laden, theTimes reported on its Web site. Malone is the author of a book,"Bin Laden's Plan," that argues that Sept. 11 was part of a plotby al-Qaida to provoke the U.S. into invading Iraq, according to asummary on the Amazon.com bookseller site.

On June 5, daredevil Alain Robert and Renaldo Clarke separatelyclimbed the Times building, which the newspaper company moved intolast year. It is covered with slats that allowed the men to climbthe tower like a ladder.

Dozens of police and firefighters responded about 1:30 a.m.after the new climber was first spotted on the building, policesaid. Streets were closed off and an inflatable cushion was placedin front of the main entrance.

The Daily News reported on its Web site that it had received acall from a man identifying himself as Malone. He said he was a29-year-old college dropout from Connecticut who had studiedal-Qaida for years. He said he wanted to draw attention to hisbelief that al-Qaida's "intentional provocation of the U.S." wasthe greatest threat to American national security.

Police did not immediately confirm those reports. Malone'shometown was not available.

On June 5, both climbers made it to the top and were chargedwith reckless endangerment, criminal trespass and disorderlyconduct. Malone told the News that the Times itself providedinformation about how to scale its new headquarters in an articleabout the June climbs.

A spokeswoman for the Times, Catherine Mathis, saidmodifications were made to the building and additional security wasadded after those stunts. The company was investigating howWednesday's climber was able to overcome the additional obstacles.

The criminal case against Robert evaporated when grand jurorsrefused to indict him after hearing about his climbing experienceand safeguards. He still faced a disorderly conduct citation, a farless serious charge.

After the grand jury refused to indict Robert, prosecutors saidthey were weighing how to proceed against Clarke.

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