Poodle on the Subway; Owner in Jail

Dog owner sues NYPD for "over-exaggerated" reaction

Thursday, Jul 29, 2010  |  Updated 6:04 PM EDT
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Poodle on the Subway; Owner in Jail

Paul Martinka/NYPost

Pictured with her pooch "Louie", Icelyn Garcia, of Borough Park Brooklyn.

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It started with a poodle on the subway.  It ended with the owner behind bars.

Brooklyn College student and dog owner Icelyn Garcia,  and her cousin had finished shopping for their aunt's baby shower  when they entered the 86th Street R train station in Bay Ridge on May 29, 2009, with Louie the poodle under Garcia's arm.  A police officer told Garcia that the dog had to be in a carrying case, she told the New York Post.

Now Garcia is suing the NYPD over the ensuing confrontation: She said she pleaded with the officer, Jessica Gavaras, not to give her a ticket while her cousin took Louie out of the station.  The cop refused, but didn't write out the ticket, nor did she return Garcia's ID to her, she told the Post.

Becoming frustrated, Garcia pulled out her cellphone.  "I went to look at the time [on the phone] and she got really upset," Garcia told the Post. Gavaras tried to take it away, Garcia said, starting a tug-of-war on the platform over the phone. 

The officer arrested Garcia for disorderly conduct, and although the charges were later dropped, she spent the night at the station, "the worst night of my life," she told the Post.

"A prostitute offered me a job...there were women in there hiding drugs in their private parts. People were fighting.  I've never been around that caliber of people in my life," Garcia told the Post.  "I was embarrassed.  I was humiliated.  It wasn't right.  [Gavares'] reaction was over-exaggerated."

Yesterday, Garcia filed suit in a Brooklyn federal court, seeking "unspecified monetary damages," reported the Post, to whom the NYPD declined to comment.

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