Innocent Belgian Tourist Welcomed to New York Via NYPD Arrest

Innocent Belgian Tourist Welcomed to New York Via NYPD Arrest

Welcome to New York, Aaron Vansintjan. The 21-year-old university student, visiting New York over the holidays, found himself face down in the grass at Fort Tyron Park on December 22, a pose requested by members of the NYPD via a push and a drawn gun. This was after a pleasant day spent shopping at Macy's with his mom. He was at the park to meet friends and look at art.

What prompted police to arrest Vansintjan? The Macy's bag he carried. Right before the student arrived at the park, a New Yorker (read: crazy person) had reported a break-in at his apartment. When policed showed up, he fingered Vansintjan as the culprit, pointing at the kid's lithe frame casually making its way through the park. Later, while Vansintjan was being questioned at the station, the crazy person admitted that there had been no burglary, but that "people were out to get him." A psychiatric hospital was his next stop.

As for Vansintjan, he was released after spending a day in jail for something that never happened. Presumably he is now back at McGill University in Montreal. Probably he has surrounded himself with good Canadian things—Take Care, Echoes of Silence—that have little to do with his American misadventure.

[via NYTimes]

Tags: new-york, nypd, belgium, tourism
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