YouTuber streams arrest at Disney's Epcot Center after claiming bag was stolen

Deputies say YouTuber was aggressive, wouldn't stop recording

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Jason Ethier, better known by his YouTube name, "ImJayStation," was arrested Sunday at Disney's Epcot Center on charges of trespassing and resisting arrest without violence.

Orange County deputies described Ethier as an "irate individual," who screamed, cursed and was "verbally aggressive."

"The  security  manager  then  told  Mr.  Ethier  to  leave  the property  because  he  started  to  film their  security  officers  and  the  baggage  check  which  is  a  violation  of  Walt  Disney  World  policy," deputies wrote in their report.

Reached by phone, Ethier, who manages a YouTube channel with 1.8 million subscribers, admitted he should have reacted differently when his bag disappeared at the Epcot security checkpoint.

He and fellow YouTuber JamesTheFam planned to stream live video once inside Epcot on Sunday and recorded Ethier walking through the metal detector.

A brief video posted on JamesTheFam's Twitter page shows a security guard warn JamesTheFam to stop recording.

"We don't take photos of security at Walt Disney World," the security officer said.

Ethier said that seconds later, his bag, which was filled with camera equipment and cash, did not appear at the other end of the X-ray machine.

"Security people told him he had to put the bag on the table and go through the X-ray machine. He gets out of the X-ray machine and his bag is freaking gone," JamesTheFam said in another video recorded in front of Epcot ticket booths. "The craziest thing is, I was recording it. I was recording it, making it a joke, and a guy comes over and says, 'Sir you're going to have to delete that clip. We can't you showing our security on video here.'"

A clip from the video shows Ethier on the ground in handcuffs surrounded by Orange County Sheriff's Office deputies.

Deputies said they warned Ethier to leave the park and stop recording but Ethier refused.

Deputies said they told Ethier several times that his bag had not been stolen but had been accidentally taken and he could be pick it up at lost and found.

Ethier said he's suspicious of that story.

Deputies said that shortly after the incident, the bag was recovered.

Ethier said he has attempted to pick up the bag from the Orange County Sheriff's Office and was told it's being held in the evidence room and he will not be able to retrieve it for several days.

Disney said the incident is under investigation by the Sheriff's Office and referred News 6 to the arrest affidavit.

Below is the unedited incident narrative taken directly from the arrest affidavit provided by the Orange County Sheriff's Office: 

"On  March  25,  2018 around  1830 hours,  I  Deputy  Stephens  was  working  in  an  off  duty capacity at  Walt  Disney  World's  Ticket  and Transportation  Center. While  on  scene,  I  was  asked  my Security  managers  to  stand  by  while  they  talk  to  an  irate  individual,  Jason  Ethier. Mr. Ethier was extremely  upset  due  to  the  fact  his  bag  was  taken  by  another  guest  at  the  park  by mistake.  While  speaking  to  the  managers,  Mr . Ethier  was  verbally  aggressive  with  them;  telling them  they  needed  to  get  his  camera  back  or  he  was  going  to  sue  them.  The  security  managers  explained  to  him  several  times  his  options  on  how  to  retrieve  his  property  by  calling guest  claims  or  checking  lost  and  found.  Mr. Ethier  refused  to  listen  to  these  options  and continued  to  verbally  berate  the  managers.  The  security  manager  then  told  Mr.  Ethier  to  leave the property  because  he  started  to  film  their  security  officers  and  the  baggage  check  which  is  a violation  of  Walt  Disney  World  policy.  Mr.  Ethier still  continued  to  argue  with  them  at  this  time he  was  told  again  to  leave.  Mr.  Ethier  started  to  walk  awa.  I  and  other  Deputies  on  scene  followed  him.  While  walking  away,  Mr.  Ethier  continued  to  curse,  scream  and  multiple  times stopped  and  turned  around  to  curse  at  myself and  people  near  him  (Passive  Physical).  Mr. Ethier  was  told  by  me  and  Deputies  to  continue  to  walk  and  leave.    Mr.  Ethier  was again stopped, turned  around  and  began  to  yell  and  squared  his  body  towards  me.  At  this  time, I  believe  Mr.  Ethier  was  either  going  to  become  aggressive  or not  leave  the  property.  I  went  to secure  Mr.  Ethier  and  as  I  grabbed  his  left  arm  he  yanked  and  tried  to  break  my  grasp (Active Physical).  Mr. Ethier  was  then  taken  to  the  ground  using  an  arm  bar  take  down  (Physical Control).  Mr.  Ethier  had  a  small  scrape  on  his  left  elbow.  Mr.  Ethier  was  then  secured  in double  locked  handcuffs.    A  road  supervisor  Cpl.  Harper  responded  to  the  scene  to  check  on his  injuries  and  no  use  of force  was  needed  to  be  completed.  He  denied  medical attention  when offered  to  him.  Security  Manager  Thomas  Bender  completed  a  sworn written  statement  which  stated  the  following:  On  March  25,  2018 around  1830 hours,  two  guests  were  filming  the security  area  and  were  asked to  stop  filming  our  security  operations.  The  guests  did  not comply. One  guest,  Mr.  Either,  claimed  his  camera  was  stolen;  so  Mr.  Bender offered  to  do  a  report.  Mr.  Ethier  left  and  did  not  wish  to  complete  a  report  but  demanded  money  from  him.  Mr. Ethier  was  given  the  option  to contact  guest  claims  for  any  questions  of  lost  property.  Mr.  ethier did  not  like  this  answer  and  became  rude  and  started  to  film  security operations  once  again.  Mr.  Bender  then  requested  the  Orange  County  Deputies  to  assist  when  Mr.  Bender  asked  Mr. Either  to  leave  the property.  Mr.  Ethier  began  to  yell  at  guests,  the  Deputies  and  security officers.  Mr.  Ethier  than  confronted  the  Deputies  at  bag  check  and  was detained. Mr.  Ethier stated  to  me  multiple  times  he  was  going  to  sue  me  and  I  was  a  pion.  He  then  went  on to  ask  me  how  much  money  I  made and  I  couldn't  afford  to  be  sued  because  I  have  nothing. He  also  explained  this  is  why  everyone  hates  American  Police.  He  then  told  me  this was  going  to  come  full  circle  and  he  is  very  powerful.  I  asked  him  if  he  was  threatening  me and  he  became  defensive  once  again.    This  verbal barrage  would  continue  for  the  duration  of my  time  spent  with  Mr.  Ethier.  A  trespass  warning  was  completed  and  submitted  into  evidence.  Mr. Ethier bag was located and placed into evidence for safekeeping. Mr. Ethier was transported to BRC without incident."

About the Author:

Erik von Ancken anchors and reports for WKMG-TV News 6 (CBS) in Orlando and is a two-time Emmy award-winning journalist in the prestigious and coveted "On-Camera Talent" categories for both anchoring and reporting. Erik joined the News 6 News Team in 2003 days after the tragic loss of space shuttle Columbia.