Disney World has been shut down since March due to the coronavirus pandemic, and all that empty space seemed like the perfect campsite for a trespasser who was arrested Thursday.
Richard McGuire, a 42-year-old man from Mobile, Ala., was arrested after police found him camping out on Discovery Island, according to the arrest report obtained by Variety. He was charged with a misdemeanor for trespassing and banned from all Disney properties.
“Richard 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,” the police report said. Despite multiple “no trespassing” signs, McGuire said he didn’t know the area was restricted to the public and that it looked like a “tropical paradise.”
Police officers from Orange County, Fla., searched for McGuire across the park on foot and by using boats and helicopters before eventually locating him.
“Richard said that he did not see or hear them due to being asleep in one of the buildings on the island,” the police report said.
Originally named Treasure Island, Discovery Island opened in 1974 for Disney World tourists to observe various species of animals and birds. It was closed in 1999 and all of the wildlife was relocated to the Animal Kingdom park. Since then, Discovery Island is only accessible by watercraft, which the police report states McGuire used to reach the area.