Subway Breakdancing Arrests Up 4700% Since Last Year

Subway Breakdancing Arrests Up 4700% Since Last Year
Photo: Daniel Torres Bonatto

And they wonder why the #mynypd campaign failed so spectacularly.

Last month, we shared the news that Police Commissioner Bill Bratton and the NYPD had officially begun cracking down on pesky subway breakdancers (and their little dogs, too!), very publicly arresting two young performers in a recent effort to make the subway a safer and more bearable place. Now, NBC New York has gone public with the full scale of the new policy: In the last four months alone, there’s been a whopping 4700 percent increase in subway dancing-related arrests.

Like window cleaners and local oyster beds before them, subway breakdancers are going the way of the dinosaur.

According to NYPD officials, 96 arrests have already been made in the Great Anti-Showtime Crusade of 2014 with 46 dancers being arrested and charged with reckless endangerment. Another 50 are facing the lesser charge of disorderly conduct. Last year, only two arrests were made for the same offense.

The only remaining question is how they’re catching the decidedly agile dancers in the first place. Apparently, we can chalk it all up to rider complaints, which are now immediately forwarded to the NYPD by the MTA. This more efficient method of communication allows officers to pinpoint and arrest troublemakers before showtime can even really begin.

And subway dancers aren’t alone in this crackdown. The NYPD is now cuffing panhandlers and illegal peddlers, too. For those groups, arrests are up 271 percent and 66 percent, respectively.

Follow Nikita Richardson on Twitter @nikitarbk


  1. some enterprising soul should draft an online petition. Many of us like the dancers– they have no links to crime. I think we could generate some real numbers of our own.

    Who is willing?


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