A Tennessee man is dead after participating in a prank robbery for a YouTube video.
According to a press release shared by Nashville authorities, 20-year-old YouTuber Timothy Wilks was shot dead in the parking lot of a Hermitage, Tenn. trampoline park on the evening of Friday, Feb. 5.
Police state that Wilks and a friend, who was not identified in the press release, allegedly approached a group of people with butcher knives in their hands. According to police, Wilks and the other individual intended to stage a fake robbery as part of a YouTube video. David Starnes Jr. then shot Wilks.
When authorities arrived on the scene, Starnes Jr. claimed he pulled the trigger in self-defense and was “unaware” that it was only a prank.
Starnes Jr. is not currently facing charges.
Police are investigating his self-defense claim.
Wilks’ death amplifies an ongoing trend of YouTube pranks going awry.
Over the years, multiple vloggers have found themselves in hot water after participating in similar schemes, and in extreme cases some have faced criminal charges for their actions.