Drunken "joker" left dangling over road for 90 minutes after bet with friends went wrong

Drunken 'joker' left dangling over road for 90 minutes after bet with friends went wrongLee Bassett clambered over bridge above passing cars for 'bit of a dare'He lowered himself down before asking a fellow drinker to pull him upBut his friend was too weak to haul 29-year-old back onto the bridgeAll three emergency services called out to rescue him at cost of 5,000

By
Leon Watson

PUBLISHED:

03:21 GMT, 13 February 2013

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UPDATED:

07:47 GMT, 13 February 2013

A drunk prankster who dangled from a footbridge in a harness bringing traffic to a standstill had to be rescued at a cost to the taxpayer of nearly 5,000, a court heard.

Lee Bassett, 29, clambered over the edge of the bridge above passing cars 'after a few jars' for 'a bit of a dare'.

Bassett climbed in to a harness and lowered himself down and had asked a fellow drinker to pull him up after a few minutes.

Lee Bassett dangled from a footbridge in a harness bringing traffic to a standstill had to be rescued at a cost to the taxpayer of 5,000

Lee Bassett dangled from a footbridge in a harness bringing traffic to a standstill had to be rescued at a cost to the taxpayer of 5,000

But the friend was too weak to haul him onto the bridge and Bassett was left hanging dangerously for 90 minutes.

Bassett was dangling like a child in a baby bouncer just eight feet above several busy lanes of traffic.

Roads were closed and vehicles diverted as all three emergency services were called out to rescue him, Plymouth Magistrates Court heard.

Bassett, of Plymouth, Devon, pleaded guilty to causing danger to road users and will be sentenced on March 11.

The court heard the operation to rescue Bassett cost police 1,800, the ambulance service 675 and the fire service 2,400.

Prosecutor Will Rose said Bassett was stranded on January 24 for 90 minutes.

Bassett, 29, clambered over the edge of the bridge above passing cars 'after a few jars' for 'a bit of a dare'

Bassett, 29, clambered over the edge of the bridge above passing cars 'after a few jars' for 'a bit of a dare'

He said: 'Spiderman, Mr Bassett is not. As a result of this dangerous and reckless act Gdynia Way had to be closed as well as roads in the nearby area.

'Mr Bassett apologised for his actions. It was an acutely foolish, reckless and dangerous act causing great concern to motorists and pedestrians and was resolved at great expense to the public purse.

'As a result of this bizarre prank it costs the public purse 4,875.'

The court heard Bassett 'had had a few jars' and 'did it for a dare' and told police on the scene: 'It was supposed to be a joke – it's a bet that went wrong.'

He told police he had put the harness on himself and lowered himself over the railing.

Once swinging there, a friend was supposed to bring him up – but his friend wasn't strong enough to lift him.

Bassett's solicitor said he 'wholeheartedly regrets the matter'.