If you find yourself enjoying the sounds of New York musicians while waiting for the subway, make sure to keep your toe-tapping to a minimum or you could wind up behind bars. Caroline Stern,55, and her significant other, George Hess, 54, were inspired by a drummer’s performance in the New York subway and began dancing the “Charleston” on the nearly empty platform. Like a scene from the hit movie “Footloose” a pair of police officers emerged and ordered the couple to stop dancing.
The New York Post reports that is was almost midnight when Hess and Stern were waiting for a subway train after attending the Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Midsummer Night’s Swing concert. A musician was pounding away rhythmically on his steel drums when the pair began dancing on the New York subway platform shared with only three others waiting riders a short distance away.
“They said, ‘What are you doing.’ and we said, ‘We’re dancing.’ And they said, ‘You can’t do that on the platform,’” Stern recalls.
The handcuffs did not come out until the New York law enforcement officers asked for identification and the couple could not produce sufficient proof of their names. Hess, a dentist, did have a credit card with a photo, but the police officers did not consider the card appropriate identification, according to The Blaze. The subway dancing couple was ordered to go with the officers. When the pair attempted to “film” the incident additional officers were called for back-up.
“That’s when eight ninja cops came from out of nowhere,” Stern claimed during the New York Post interview. She also claims that Hess was tackled to the floor before they were both placed in handcuffs for “impeding the flow of traffic,” – a disorderly conduct misdemeanor and resisting arrest.
All charges were eventually dropped against Stern and Hess. The pair of subway dancers have filed a lawsuit against the city in a Manhattan federal court. The New York City Law Department is currently reviewing filings in the case.