Couple Gets $75K In Settlement After Arrest For Dancing The Charleston In NYC Subway
Unless you live in the world of Footloose, it’s quite uncommon for dancing to be classified as a crime. But one couple has been defending the right to do the Charleston in public since they were arrested for doing so back in July 2011, and it sounds like they’ve come to a satisfactory resolution. New York City has settled with the couple for $75,000 after police arrested them for dancing in a subway station.
From what CBS New York says, it doesn’t sound like the twosome were hotstepping it to solicit money, but were simply dancing together on the station platform when cops came over to ask what in the heck they were doing. Come on, everyone knows the Charleston! It’s the hot new dance.
“And I responded we’re dancing, and they told us it was illegal to dance on the platform,” the woman claims.
She says that at that time officers asked for identification and the woman only had a credit card. According to the couple, the officers said they’d have to go to the precinct, and the man began recording the incident.
“I said ‘Hold it, wait. What are you charging us for?’ and the next thing you know…b oom, they arrested us, forced me to the ground,” the man told 1010WINS last year.
Police allegedly got angry when the filming began, said the couple, and told the twosome they were resisting arrest. They were also charged with impeding the free flow of traffic on the subway.
While the charges were ultimately dropped, the couple sued the city for putting them through the ordeal in the first place, which reportedly included a visit to police holding cells for 24 hours for the woman.
Police tell a different version of events, saying that couple was observed “dancing and jumping wildly on the platform” and that they “posed a danger to themselves and others on the platform.” Officers claimed the couple was drinking and posed a public health risk.
Although the city is paying $75,000 to settle the suit, it says that settlement should not be taken as any wrongdoing on the part of the police.