TikToker Katie Sigmond has pulled stunts including bowling with a pumpkin and throwing a fake cinder block at cars. But one of the social media star's recent exploits got her in trouble.
"Do we really need to say, 'don't hit golf balls into the Grand Canyon?' " officials with the national park wrote on Facebook last week, attaching a screenshot of the young woman apparently hitting a ball over the rim of the geologic wonder - and losing part of her club in the process. "Throwing objects over the rim of the canyon is not only illegal but can also endanger hikers and wildlife who may be below."
Sigmond is now facing charges for the stunt. The influencer, who did not immediately respond to The Washington Post's request for comment, has three pending misdemeanor counts related to littering, creating a hazardous condition and throwing objects over the canyon rim, park spokeswoman Joelle Baird said.
At Grand Canyon National Park, she added, "we do take incidents like this really seriously."
The video was posted to the social media celebrity's account on Oct. 26, according to the park. In it, she stands before the national landmark's iconic layered red rocks and takes a swing at a ball. Her club breaks in two, with part flying into the canyon. She spins to face the camera, her mouth agape.
"How did that happen," reads text on the clip, along with a crying-face emoji.
It was no longer on her accounts as of this week. But someone shared a screen recording on Reddit, where comments poured in blasting the woman and calling for her to be banned from the Grand Canyon.
Park officials had "a number of people reporting this incident," Baird said. Members of the public helped point to the woman in the video. Within a couple of days of the video being uploaded, Grand Canyon law enforcement had tracked her down.
The perpetrator was not named in the park's Facebook post, but Baird identified her as Sigmond. She said a citation was filed with the U.S. District Court in Flagstaff, Ariz., where the influencer will have a mandatory court appearance. The date was not immediately available. Baird said the misdemeanor counts each carry the potential of up to six months in jail and $1,000 in fines.
Sigmond, who has 6.9 million followers on TikTok and 2.9 million on Instagram, does not appear to have addressed the incident publicly, though she has continued posting to her social media accounts.
The golfing video is not without precedent. In October 2021, the national park asked for the public's help in finding a man who hit a baseball over the rim. Officials ultimately made contact with him, but it's unclear if charges were filed.
A Massachusetts comedian, Jake Adams, also faced charges after hitting biodegradable golf balls into Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. He later apologized, CBS News reported.
Baird said Grand Canyon National Park authorities have been dismayed to see such incidents unfold "on a fairly regular basis."
"This is not something that we want to encourage in any way," she said, "and in fact it's really dangerous and harmful to Grand Canyon and the people who visit."