'Miami Zombie Attack' pranksters Jonathan Vanegas, Vitaly Zdorovetskiy arrested after prank fails

BOCA RATON, Fla. -- This time they picked the wrong guy to prank.

The guys behind the YouTube sensation "Miami Zombie Attack Prank!" found themselves getting attacked after an ill-advised attempt to punk a Boca Raton man went awry and the victim went ballistic on the two filmmakers.

And if getting chased and nearly beaten wasn't enough for their troubles, both of the pranksters was jailed now faces a felony bomb hoax charge.

Jonathan Vanegas, 20, of Delray Beach, spent Friday night in the Palm Beach County Jail. His filmmaking partner, Vitaly Zdorovetskiy, 20, also of Delray Beach, later voluntarily surrendered to Boca Police, according to his lawyer.

Vanegas said he could still barely believe what happened.

"We go to the Boca jail, I'm shirtless for about four hours until I go to the county jail," Vanegas said, saying his shirt came off in the melee. "It wasn't that bad, but the worst part about it was that I was detained on the first floor with 16 other cellmates and we don't have beds or anything."

CAUTION: VIDEO CONTAINS OFFENSIVE LANGUAGE

While Vanegas was willing to meet with a reporter to talk about the incident, Zdorovetskiy was initially wary of showing his face in public because of fears that he would be arrested. He later turned himself in after an arrest report outlining Friday's incident said that probable cause existed for his arrest.

But Zdorovetskiy said Monday he doesn't regret the prank.

"I'm just sad the person got that upset," Zdorovetskiy said.

The video, "Russian Hitman Prank Gone Wrong!" had 120,000 views by Monday night. It shows Zdorovetskiy approaching a man outside the Publix at 1001 S. Federal Highway in Boca Raton.

Dressed in a suit and clutching a briefcase, Zdorovetskiy implies an emergency situation when he approaches the victim, telling him they have both 60 seconds to get away from the briefcase. The victim, appearing panicked, runs along with Zdorovetskiy. Their encounter goes south when the filmmaker tells the prank victim it was only a joke, that the entire episode was being filmed.

At this point, the victim starts chasing Zdorovetskiy and Vanegas, shouting angrily at the two. At one point, he appears to pull Vanegas, who was holding the camera, down to the ground.

The victim was identified in the police report as Andre Brown, 51, but there was no other contact information and he could not be reached for comment on Monday.

Zdorovetskiy seemed surprised that the video prank had resulted in law enforcement intervention.

"The bomb squad came. Can you believe that?" Zdorovetskiy said. "The bomb squad came for this prank. It's unbelievable how law is these days."

Zdorovetskiy, the lead filmmaker behind the VitalyzdTV YouTube channel, said he apologized to Brown.

Brown, however, didn't want to hear it, Zdorovetskiy said.

"He attacked me, my camera guy, he threw me on the floor, he threw my camera guy on the floor," said Zdorovetskiy, 20. "I was just screaming back 'Sorry, I apologize.' "

In Delray Beach Monday, Vanegas was asked if the man was somehow in on the stunt.

"No, of course not," Vanegas said.


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