Couple Arrested For Dancing On NYC Subway Platform
from the waltz-the-problem-with-dancing? dept
Perhaps some day, if I manage to live long enough, somebody somewhere will be able to explain to me why the seemingly benign combination of dancing, cameras, and police tends to result in threats, beatdowns, and arrests. Recall a year ago when I had the privilege to write about protestors getting bodyslammed at the Jefferson Memorial for the horrific crime of silently dancing on the premises?
Well, Yakko Warner writes in with the story of two nefarious characters, code named George Hess and Caroline Stern, who had the gall to dance on a New York City subway platform and were taken to the ground and arrested for their trouble. As that New York Post piece explains, the couple found themselves near a musician playing on steel drums:
“We were doing the Charleston,” Stern said. That’s when two police officers approached and pulled a “Footloose.”
“They said, ‘What are you doing?’ and we said, ‘We’re dancing,’ ” she recalled. “And they said, ‘You can’t do that on the platform.’ ”
And so, as their training manuals surely instructed them to do, the officers demanded to see their IDs. Because they were dancing. Where someone was playing the drums. In the most cosmopolitan and culturally-rich city in America. In any case, when Hess could only produce a credit card (which had his name and photo on it), this happened:
“The officers ordered the couple to go with them — even though the credit card had the dentist’s picture and signature. When Hess began trying to film the encounter, things got ugly, Stern said.“We brought out the camera, and that’s when they called backup,” she said. “That’s when eight ninja cops came from out of nowhere.”
The ninja cops then alledgedly tackled Hess to the floor, cuffed both of them, and detained the pair for twenty-three hours. The initial charge was apparently impeding the flow of traffic of what is reported to have been three other people on the platform. The police then added other charges, such as resisting arrest.
All charges were subsequently dropped when the paperwork was finally reviewed by the NYPD’s Not Crazy Department. The couple are now suing in Manhattan courts, but maybe it’s time a national memo went out to law enforcement agencies reminding them that dancing people with cameras don’t necessarily need to be tackled?