It’s the most tried and true excuse out of the trespasser’s handbook: “I didn’t know I was trespassing.” That was roughly the excuse of this Alabama man who was arrested last Thursday for camping out at Walt Disney World’s Discovery Island (originally called Treasure Island).
According to the arrest report, the man “stated that he had made entry to the island to go camping on Monday or Tuesday and had planned on staying on the island for approximately one week.”
To his credit, a deserted Disney island sounds very appealing, but the authorities weren’t exactly amused. On Thursday morning, he was spotted by Orange County Marine deputies and warned via loudspeaker that he wasn’t allowed on the island. According to him, he didn’t hear the warning or even the sounds of the people in boats, helicopters, and on foot looking for him because he had been asleep in one of the island’s buildings and believed the place was a “tropical paradise” — not private property.
Once apprehended, he was charged with a misdemeanor of trespassing on posted property and has a court hearing scheduled for June.
Disney World and Disneyland parks have been closed since the middle of March, and unfortunately, even when it opens again, the man won’t be allowed to enter any Disney properties.