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1,600 Arrested for Putting Feet Up on Subway


Sleepy New Yorkers beware: Putting your feet up on a subway seat during a late-night train ride can land you behind bars.

The New York Times reports that police arrested 1,600 people last year for violating a 7-year-old law that makes it a crime to put your feet up on the subway or sprawl out over more than one seat, even if the train is empty.

Another 6,000 people escaped arrest but got hit with a $50 fine.

The practice of tossing people in jail for an etiquette infraction has outraged some lawyers, who say it is overly harsh.

Police Department spokesman Paul Browne says rigorous enforcement makes the subway system safer.

He says many of those subway rule-breakers turn out to be wanted felons.

In a recent decision, a Brooklyn judge, Noach Dear, dismissed the case of a man cited for taking up more than one seat on an A train at 3:10 a.m. on Dec. 24. “There appears to be a disconnect between the code’s goals and its enforcement,” Judge Dear wrote in his decision. He said that he and other Brooklyn judges had found these arrests happened “late at night or early in the morning when subways are generally at their least crowded levels.”


  • 1. straphanger wrote:

    let them arest the swipe sellers at the schnetady station instead, or those taking 3 seats during morning rush

  • 2. our goverment is crazy! wrote:

    this can’t be right! people being arrested for taking up an extra seat on an empty train! Yet real criminals are let free for things more serious like assault! our government is crazy! crazy crazy crazy!!! They must all be on crack! someone needs to pay!

  • 3. BigBen wrote:

    the enforcment of this rule is almost as bad as in Sdoim. when the train is crowded and some huligan is taking up three seats there is not one cop to arrest him/her. but when the train is almost empty (2-3-4 am) the brave cops are ther to arrest people.
    Kudos to Noach Dear for following the spirit of the law.
    btw, in the picture, why is mayor dinkins riding the train so late at night?

  • 4. to number 2 wrote:

    Every government gas problems, our government is a democracy unlike Russa’s old crazy so called goverment

  • 5. shlomo as always with bad English wrote:

    we need this law in Israel! we need it on 770! now.why i can go clear. because people use to dirty all seat? it amazing people that change shoes on home in 770 going on tables with food on it!
    for #1,2,3,4 hasidut and hazirut it only 2 letter difference !beware!


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