What to Know
- The man said his towel slipped when he was taking photographs of a friend
- He says cops tackled him to the ground; police say he was being combative
- He was later charged with disorderly conduct and public nudity
A New York City photographer said that he was tackled to the ground without warning after his towel slipped off and revealed his nude body at a Queens beach on July 4, while authorities said the man refused to cover up when asked at the clothing-required public space.
Krys Fox -- whose real name is George Krys, according to police -- said in an Instagram post that he was tackled to the ground by several officers after his towel fell down during the shoot at Jacob Riis Park on Monday afternoon, claiming that there was “still sand deep in my ears” a day later.
Fox told DNAinfo that he was shooting photos of a friend when his towel fell down. He claimed that he was tackled seconds later; photos and video from the arrest show him with his head in the sand or being carried by his arms and legs by uniformed and plainclothes officers.
In one video, Fox can be heard yelling “help me” as he is carried by the officers.
"They shoved my face in the sand in front of hundreds of people, I was humiliated," he told DNAinfo. "I got an arm around my neck and they threw me to the floor and I was literally surrounded by like 11 cops."
Authorities paint a slightly different story of the arrest, saying that Fox was combative with police who asked him to put clothes on on one of the busiest days of the year at Riis.
National Parks Police Sgt. David Somma said that plainclothes officers were ticketing a trio of people for public urination when one of those men pointed out Fox and said that he too should be ticketed.
The officers then went over to Fox and asked him to cover up and walk back to his companions to receive a summons. But Somma said that Fox repeatedly refused to comply with police orders and began creating a disturbance.
Somma said that the officers put the man in handcuffs after Fox refused to give his legal name or any identification. Then, he said, the man fell to the ground and had to be carried off the beach to a police car.
He was later charged with disorderly conduct and public nudity.
Somma and National Parks Services spokeswoman Daphne Yun both said that the New York-area parks welcome everyone but that Jacob Riis is not a clothing-optional beach. Fox told DNAinfo that he thought nudity was permitted.
The only beach in the area managed by the National Parks Service that permits nudity is Gunnison Beach in Sandy Hook, New Jersey.