Man Who Wrote ‘Epstein Didn’t Kill Himself’ on Art Exhibit Wall Is Arrested

Paula Liu
By Paula Liu
December 9, 2019USshare
Man Who Wrote ‘Epstein Didn’t Kill Himself’ on Art Exhibit Wall Is Arrested
Police tape in a file photo. (Mark Makela/Getty Images)

A man who wrote a message about Jeffrey Epstein on the walls of an art exhibit in Miami was arrested on Dec. 8, according to multiple reports.

Rod Webber, a 45-year-old man from Massachusetts, was arrested after writing “Epstein didn’t kill himself” on the wall of  Art Basel Miami Beach, Daily Mail reported.

Following the incident, authorities arrived to take Webber away. The Miami Herald reported that Webber was arrested for criminal mischief.

The crime was reported at 4:50 p.m. and Webber was taken away around 5 p.m., according to the Herald.

The message that Webber wrote alluded to “conspiracy theories” regarding Epstein’s death, with many people believing that should Epstein have gone to trial following his arrest, a chain reaction would have implicated people within a global pedophile ring, and as a result, his death as arranged by said people, according to the Daily Mail.

Jeffrey Epstein
Jeffrey Epstein appears in a photograph taken for the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services’ sex offender registry March 28, 2017. (New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services/Handout/File Photo via Reuters)

The wall Webber wrote on was the same wall in the exhibit where the now-famous $120,000 banana artwork used to be.

A performance artist took the banana that was taped to the wall on Dec. 7 and ate it, according to Daily Mail. The art piece, created by Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan, titled ‘Comedian’ had been sold to a French collector for $120,000. The idea was to replace the banana with another one, but it was removed for crowd safety reasons.

banana
People post in front of Maurizio Cattelan’s “Comedian” presented by Perrotin Gallery and on view at Art Basel Miami 2019 at Miami Beach Convention Center in Miami Beach, Florida, on Dec. 6, 2019. Two of the three editions of the piece, which feature a banana duct-taped to a wall, have reportedly sold for $120,000. (Cindy Ord/Getty Images)

As Webber was being taken away by authorities, he was heard shouting, “If someone can eat the $120,000 banana and not get arrested, why can’t I write on the wall?”

According to a video of the arrest posted by the Herald, another man could be heard saying, “This is the gallery where anyone can do art, right?”

The vandalism was captured when Webber live-streamed the incident. People gathered around Webber as he wrote on the wall, and even pointing out that Webber had spelt Epstein’s name wrong during the incident. Sacha Medici, one of the people at the art exhibit hoping to see the banana piece, found the section of the exhibit and witnessed Webber vandalizing the wall where the banana used to be, according to the Herald.

“When we got the wall, it was white and empty. We saw this guy live-streaming … and it starts writing on the wall and I was like, ‘No way, there’s no way this guy is writing,'” Medici told the Herald.

Katherine Wisniewski, the spokesperson for the Emmanuel Perrotin art gallery, said that the art gallery was in no part affiliated with Webber, according to the Herald.

The vandalism was eventually covered up with white cardboard by security staff at the event, New York Daily News reported.

This article has been updated to include the correct name of the man arrested. NTD News regrets the error.

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