It seems a lot these days can be justified in the name of artistic expression. But police in Missouri are not buying the claims of a man dressed as the Joker and charged with making terrorist threats who says that it was all just “performance art”.
Jeremy Garnier, 51, said: “I’m planning on killing a bunch of people,” on a Facebook livestream earlier this week.
He has been arrested and charged with making terrorist threats during the livestream while wearing full Joker makeup, according to police.
Garnier produced an hour-long livestream in which he appears as the iconic Batman villain complete with full lipstick, local channel 12news reported. He filmed himself at the Blueberry Hill bar and restaurant in University City, then the St. Louis Galleria and driving around Delmar Loop.
In the livestream, Garnier says: “Yes, I’m doing this for attention, but the attention I seek is to take over the world. I’m going to start killing people until this reaches a thousand (viewers), and once it reaches a thousand, I’m going to go out in public and I’m going to kill more.”
Garnier was eventually arrested while he was still streaming live, after several members of the public complained of the disturbance he was creating and alerted police.
As of Thursday, the video had amassed over 56,000 views.
In the course of his rant, Garnier goes on to say: “We’re going to go totally unarmed because we don’t want to alert the authorities into thinking we might be on an actual rampage.”
He then orders a Sprite when the bartender offers him a drink and adds: “Yeah, I can’t be inebriated when I’m planning on, you know, killing a bunch of people. It’s not something you can do. I’m live on Facebook right now. I’ve got like nearly 2,000 people watching me.”
Following his arrest on Monday night, Garnier has been charged with a first-degree felony charge of making a terrorist threat and is being held without bond.
He has now claimed that the disturbing livestream was all just performance art. A GoFundMe page set up to help Garnier says: “While this was undoubtedly not Jeremy’s best decision considering the consequences … he was not threatening anyone. As he says … he was chasing ‘clout’… trying to increase his Facebook viewers and bring attention to the opiate crisis plaguing this country.”