A teenage boy is facing criminal charges after attending a concert by US pop star Pink on Sunday night at Rod Laver Arena, but the 16-year-old wasn’t arrested for his arguably poor music taste but instead for inadvertently setting off a bomb scare at the nearly 15,000 capacity venue, as The Age reports.
The unidentified teenager was in attendance at the Sunday night show, one of 16 Rod Laver Arena performances in Melbourne as part of Pink’s staggering 42-date, Live Nation-backed Truth About Love Tour. But an inconspicuous tweet from the boy to the pop star blew up after it came to the attention of Rod Laver Arena’s management.
Staff and security had the boy ejected from the concert and then arrested by police after misinterpreting his tweet, which referenced lyrics from a Pink song called ‘Timebomb’, as a genuine threat.
The now-deleted tweet read:
A police spokeswoman told Ninemsn that officers were called out to the Pink Concert at around 8.30pm in relation to a “bomb threat,” noting that “Police interviewed a 16-year-old Warrnambool boy and he will be charged on summons.”
David King, the evicted fan’s father, was forced to make the three-hour trip from Warrnambool to Melbourne to collect his son from the authorities, telling radio station 3AW this morning that security had “seriously overreacted” to his soon’s innocent – if poorly executed – notice of enthusiasm.
misinterpreting his tweet…
“When he wrote that, he didn’t have time to put ‘Timebomb’, you know,” said Mr King, who said that police demonstrated leniency when they realised that the ‘bomber’ was in fact not a terrorist mastermind.
“The policeman said to me, ‘if it was up to me, I would have booted him in the backside and said go home,’” added Mr King. But Rod Laver Arena staff “demanded (he) be arrested,” adds the disgruntled dad, insisting the teenager be charged with being a public nuisance.
The ‘Timebomb’ twitterer was reportedly tracked down by up to 20 venue security from the 12,000 strong Pink attendees by using his Twitter profile picture to identify him. A spokeswoman for the Arena told Warrnambool paper The Standard that they take all any threats to safety very seriously.
“We can’t risk not taking matters like this seriously,” she said. “From our point of view, we have systems in place to monitor social media to ensure the safety and security of the venue, of guests and performers. Our security staff acted to ensure the area was secure and handed the matter over to the police.”
There was no reply from the pop star herself over the incident but her ‘explosive’ live show continues (sans explosions) through July and August with 30 dates left in Melbourne, Brisbane, and Sydney.
The moral of the story?
Don’t go to Pink concerts Careful what you tweet because you never know who’s watching.
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