UTAH COUNTY, Utah — A video of three Utah Boy Scout leaders toppling an ancient sandstone formation at Goblin Valley State Park has gone viral, and after more than 2 million views, the individuals connected to the video said they’re receiving death threats.
“You have no idea: ridiculous,” said Glenn Taylor, who toppled the 200-million year-old boulder. “We’re dealing with it. We made a mistake, and they want to go after our family.”
Many have expressed outrage after the trio posted video of themselves toppling a rock formation that dates back to the Jurassic period. Click here for the video of the incident.
“I’m not aware of any other times where this has happened,” said Jeff Rasmussen, who is the deputy director of Utah State Parks and Recreation.
While leading a scouting camping trip, the leaders insist they pushed the boulder over for safety reasons.
The man shooting the video, Dave Hall, can be heard saying: “Some little kid was ready to walk down here and die, and Glenn saved his life by getting the boulder out of the way. It’s all about saving lives here at Goblin Valley.”
“Not at all credible. No,” said Eugene Swalberg, spokesperson for Utah State Parks. “There’s been no documented falling of rocks on any individuals that any of us are aware of, so this is highly inappropriate behavior.”
But Hall disagreed.
“Just because there’s no documentation of a goblin falling on somebody doesn’t mean that it can’t happen,” he said.
While they’re sticking to their story, Glenn Taylor has expressed regret for his actions. Investigators are now mulling criminal charges, including possible felonies. The Boy Scouts of America condemned the actions today.
National spokesperson Deron Smith said in part: “We are shocked and disappointed by this reprehensible behavior. For more than a century, the Boy Scouts of America has been a leader in conservation… the principles of ‘Leave No Trace’ …The isolated actions of these individuals are absolutely counter to our beliefs and what we teach. We are reviewing this matter and will take appropriate action.’
“We are 100 percent willing to be responsible for anything that we might have done,” Hall said.
“I love the Boy Scouts, I’m sorry they’re going through with this,” Taylor added. “I wish we would’ve gotten a ranger and let him push it over.”
Swalberg said a ranger would not have toppled the formation. The three could be punished by the scouts, and while the Emery County Attorney has not received the case yet, park officials said there could be some decisions Monday.