Pole sitter draws crowds, snarls Times Square traffic

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 28, 2011 3:43 PM
Pole sitter draws crowds, snarls Times Square traffic

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Tourists in Times Square were treated to a free "show" on Tuesday when a man scaled a light pole, halting traffic for nearly two hours as police tried to coax him down.

The man, wearing an orange-red T-shirt, shorts and a baseball cap, clambered up a light pole at 44th Street and Seventh Avenue, the heart of Times Square, around mid-morning.

As onlookers watched, snapping pictures, he waved his arms, stood, shouted out to the crowd and finally sat down, swinging his legs. Witnesses said he seemed to be promoting a rap music CD.

After nearly two hours, during which helmeted police standing on a truck tried to reach him and coax him down, he descended a ladder they had put up, and was taken in police custody to Bellevue Hospital for evaluation.

Traffic resumed its slow crawl through the congested area a short time later.

Police said charges are pending.

(Reporting by Chris Michaud; Editing by Barbara Goldberg and Jerry Norton)