Did you know that it is legal for women to go topless in New York? Apparently the Brooklyn police didn’t. They arrested 24-year-old Jessica Krigman for going topless, and now she’s suing them.

 

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Krigman, a burlesque dancer who performs a fire-eating bondage act under the name Nikki Talis, filed a lawsuit on Tuesday against the NYPD and the two officers who arrested her in July of 2012. To argue her case, she’s citing the 1992 state Court of Appeals decision that a woman can be topless anywhere a man is allowed to be bare-chested.

“She was minding her own business, sunbathing, and they approached her aggressively,” said Krigsman’s lawyer, Stuart Jacobs. “They asked for ID and told her to put on her shirt.”

One cop told her to “stop mouthing off” and threatened her with arrest, court papers say. “The female cop picked up Jessica’s shirt and forced it onto her,” Jacobs said. “She didn’t resist in any way or fight in any way. They arrested her and cuffed her and took her to the precinct.”

“The female cops hate to see topless women,” Krigsman explained. “The guys are always cool with it.”

Krigsman said that the officers added insult to injury when they shackled her with pink cuffs and held her for five hours. She was eventually charged with “obstruction of a sitting area,” but the rap was dropped three months later, according to the suit.

Do you think women should be allowed to go topless anywhere a man can?