Omaha, NE – Since February, gallon smashing has become something of a reckless plague for grocers.
Stemming from several viral YouTube videos demonstrating the prank, mischief making copycats have been inspired to replicate the stunt, not realizing there are criminal consequences for their silly actions. Previous pranksters have faced penalties for destruction of property and disorderly conduct.
In the videos, young men are seen strolling through grocery stores when suddenly they feign a slip and fall and haphazardly launch one or more gallons of juice or milk into the air or intentionally smash them onto the ground.
The containers land, explode, and leave a surrounding sticky wet mess on the floor, products, and bystanders. During some of the incidences, gallon jugs slam against and damage shelves and displays.
Thus far no one, other than those performing the stunt, has been struck by a rouge jug – at least there have not been any injuries of that nature reported yet.
The young men will often writhe and moan, faking an injury or will repeatedly wriggle and slip in the resulting liquid and bait for attention.
In an Omaha Hy-Vee grocery, 29-year-old Kelly Kayser, an employee, noticed four young men indicatively prepping for one of these pranks around 5:15 pm last Sunday.
According to the police report, Kayser witnessed 21-year-old Christian Cain carrying two gallons of milk with his three friends in tow with their camera phones out and ready and pursued the crew in hopes of derailing their plans.
The group managed to elude the employee and scampered down the cereal aisle. Kayser subsequently found Cain on the floor of the aisle in a pool of milk with customers attempting to help him up. Cain was detained while the police were called. Cain’s friends did not wait around for the authorities and left him behind.
Cain admitted to officers he’d performed the stunt on purpose. His tomfoolery resulted in nearly $260 in damages as the milk ruined 65 boxes of Pop-Tarts and 27 boxes of cereal. Damages also included the cost of the two gallons of milk used. For his role in the prank, Cain was charged with misdemeanor criminal mischief. The 21-year-old could be sentenced to six months in jail and fined $1,000.
Do you think that prankers who perform “gallon smashing” stunts should be criminally charged?