Social media prank turns dangerous at Target store, sending California woman to hospital

Four teens were involved in the prank, but police are still searching for them

SPRINGFIELD, VA - AUGUST 14: Customers leave Target August 14, 2003. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images) (Alex Wong, 2003 Getty Images)

TUSTIN, Calif. – What started as a casual Sunday stroll through a Target store quickly turned into a terrifying health scare for a California woman after a social media prank went wrong, according to Tustin police.

Lana Clay-Monaghan was shopping at the store on March 26, in the self-care aisle, when the unexpected happened, according to a report from ABC 7.

A group of four teenagers made their way around the store and picked up a bucket before confronting Monaghan as part of a social media prank.

Police said the teens placed the bucket over Monaghan’s head, causing her to become disoriented.

“It obscured my vision,” Clay-Monaghan told ABC 7. “I couldn’t hear, and I really couldn’t breathe. And I immediately grabbed for it and started screaming for help.”

Eventually, Monaghan was able to get the bucket off of her head, but she said the teens were laughing while documenting the incident on their cellphones.

“The last thing I said was ‘help,’ and I started to cry. And that was the last moment before I went out, and I hit the ground,” Clay-Monaghan told ABC 7.

The group of teens ran from the store before the authorities arrived.

Monaghan told ABC 7 that she has epilepsy, and the sudden stress from the prank caused her to pass out and hit her head.

Police said she was taken to an area hospital for treatment but was in stable condition.

“It is likely the juveniles were attempting to replicate the current social media trend where they place a bucket on a stranger’s head and film their reaction. There is no current threat to the community,” police said in a news release.

Police are classifying the incident as an assault, and at last check, the teens involved have not been apprehended.

The investigation continues.

About the Author:

Cody King is a digital journalist for KSAT 12. She previously worked for WICS/WRSP 20 in Springfield, Illinois.