Watch Your Behavior on the 'F' Train

Put you feet up on an an subway seat, and risk going to to jail. Bad behavior, sure. But criminal? In an effort to make the subway safer, NYPD is viewing even minor code violations seriously.
January 7, 2012, 3pm PST | Irvin Dawid
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"It is perhaps the most minor crime New Yorkers are routinely arrested for: sitting improperly on a subway seat. Seven years ago, rule 1050(7)(J) of the city's transit code criminalized what was once simply bad etiquette: passengers putting their feet on a subway seat."

"Paul J. Browne, the New York Police Department's chief spokesman, said enforcement of subway regulations had made the transit system much safer."

However, as the article illustrates, enforcement of some of these new crimes has only created lawsuits against the City for unlawful arrest.

"Police officers handed out more than 6,000 tickets for these violations in 2011. But a $50 ticket would have been welcome compared with the trouble many passengers found themselves in; roughly 1,600 people ...were arrested, sometimes waiting more than a day to be brought before a judge and released, according to statistics from district attorneys' offices.

In some instances, passengers were arrested because they had outstanding warrants, or did not have photo identification. Some arrests were harder to explain, with no apparent cause other than the seat violation. In at least one case, the arrest led to deportation.

Lawyers say many of the cases originate on the F train at the Rockefeller Center stop."

Thanks to NY Times: My Alerts: Subway news

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Published on Saturday, January 7, 2012 in The New York Times
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