NYC Subway Performers: We're Being Over-Policed

Tuesday, August 12, 2014 - 04:21 PM

NEW YORK (AP) -- Acrobats, dancers and musicians who perform in New York City's subway system are decrying what they say is heavy-handed policing.

Several performers championed their cause outside City Hall Tuesday. Police had no immediate response.

More than 240 subway performers have been arrested so far this year. That's about four times as many as the same period last year.

Transit rules generally allow performing for tips in parts of subway stations, but not in trains or with amplifiers, unless artists have permits.

Some performers say they comply but still get arrested.

Others acknowledge breaking the rules but say the police should focus on crime, not on entertainment.

Mayor Bill de Blasio has said these may not seem like big offenses, "but breaking the law is breaking the law."


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Comments [4]

John Duryee

"Breaking the law is breaking the law" -- and how does the mayor feel about illegal immigrants?

Aug. 13 2014 11:27 AM
Honora from Manhattan

Sorry, my comment should have said that arresting more sedate performers isn't right.

Aug. 13 2014 11:06 AM
Honora from Manhattan

This is a crackdown because of the acrobatic break-dancers who perform in the trains themselves. The performances may be engergetic and entertaining, but they are not suitable for such a confined space.

The fact that more sedate performers are being hassled it's right. I thought all subway performers had to have permits. I remember seeing an audition process for these permits on the news a couple of times over the years. If you have a permit you shouldn't be arrested.

Aug. 13 2014 10:56 AM

"Breaking the law is breaking the law." Brilliant and thoughtful response Mr Mayor.(not). Enforcement discretion is a policy you may wish to research.

Aug. 13 2014 10:16 AM

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