Controversy surrounds arrest of underground subway performer

Their performances, normally echoing through the labyrinth of stations and platforms in the city's subway system, now rings loud, drawing attention to the recent arrest of one of their own.

Andrew Kalleen, a guitarist, singer and subway performer was arrested on the southbound platform of the G train last Saturday, when he was confronted by an NYPD officer.

"He told me to pack up," Kalleen says.

Kalleen and the officer disagree on the law regarding these types of freelance performances.

Kalleen argues that these types of performances have been legal since 1985, yet he says he and others are targeted by police.

"It's not okay - it's not the way to live," adds Kalleen.

MTA officials tell Eyewitness News they do not know why Kalleen was being asked to leave the station. At one point the officer proceeds to arrest him, calling in other officers. Kalleen says he was surprised when he got hit in the head with his guitar.

"The unlawful arrest that musicians get and vendors get needs to stop," says Matthew Shapiro of the Street Vendor Project.

The NYPD officially says Kalleen was issued a desk appearance ticket for loitering.





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