Play stupid games, win stupid prizes. That’s the lesson twin YouTubers and TikTokers Alan and Alex Stokes are learning the hard way as they now face up to four years in state prison for two stunts in which they allegedly faked bank robberies in Irvine, California last October.
The 23-year-old Stokes Twins, who first gained fame on Vine, now join fellow YouTube star Jake Paul in drawing the interest of law enforcement as they have been charged with one felony count of false imprisonment effected by violence, menace, fraud, or deceit and one misdemeanor count of falsely reporting an emergency (or swatting), reports TMZ.
In a press release regarding the twins’ arrests, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office wrote, “On October 15, 2019, at about 2:30 p.m., the Stokes brothers are accused of being dressed all in black, wearing ski masks, and carrying duffle bags full of cash as they pretended they had just robbed a bank while their videographer filmed this.
“They ordered an Uber and when they got in the vehicle the Uber driver, who was unaware of the prank, refused to drive them. A bystander witnessed this, believing the two men had just robbed a bank and were attempting to carjack the Uber driver.
“Irvine police arrived and ordered the Uber driver out at gunpoint. He was released after police determined he was not involved.
“Police issued a warning to the Stokes brothers about the dangerous of their conduct and let them go.”
Amazingly, after all of that and hetting let off with just a warning, the Stokes Twins are charged with pulling the exact same stunt again four hours later on the campus of the University of California-Irvine.
“These were not pranks,” said Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer. “These are crimes that could have resulted in someone getting seriously injured or even killed. Law enforcement officers are sworn to protect the public and when someone calls 911 to report an active bank robbery they are going to respond to protect lives. Instead, what they found was some kind of twisted attempt to gain more popularity on the internet by unnecessarily putting members of the public and police officers in danger.”
Watch the twins’ encounter with police following the first fake bank robbery prank below…