Men Talk About Arrest After Planning Harlem Shake in Hialeah

Over the past several months, the Harlem Shake has emerged as web phenomenon marked by its sedate start and quick cut to a circus of synthesized beats and weird dance moves.

By Justin Finch
|  Wednesday, Mar 13, 2013  |  Updated 12:06 AM EDT
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Tim Metz and Jamal Wright said no crime was committed that February day, but they and their friend, Eric Faden were all arrested, after they said Hialeah officers told them they couldn't film there or be there. They say they had planned to do the Harlem Shake.

Tim Metz and Jamal Wright said no crime was committed that February day, but they and their friend, Eric Faden were all arrested, after they said Hialeah officers told them they couldn't film there or be there. They say they had planned to do the Harlem Shake.

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Last month, Tim Metz and Jamal Wright said their chance to join the Harlem Shake bandwagon was cut short by Hialeah Police.

"It wasn't like a riot or anything, it was 20, 25 people -- nothing crazy," Metz said.

"We were doing what millions of other kids around the world are doing on Youtube," Wright added.

Metz planned to dance in a banana costume, and Wright was set to juggle in front of the Hialeah city sign at W. 84th St. and 12th Ave. back in February.

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Over the past several months, the Harlem Shake has emerged as web phenomenon marked by its sedate start and quick cut to a circus of synthesized beats and weird dance moves.

Metz and Wright said no crime was committed that February day, but they and their friend, Eric Faden were all arrested, after they said Hialeah officers told them they couldn't film there or be there. Faden was arrested as he filmed police breaking up the shoot, and Metz saw it.

"They dropped him to the floor, and he was already leaving, walking away, saying 'I'm leaving, I'm leaving,'" Metz said.

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Faden, a substitute teacher with political aspirations, is now worried this incident could impact his future. His phone was confiscated, and he and Jamal were initially charged with tresspassing, and resisting arrest without violence. Faden's lawyer, Jose Herrera, called the charges baseless.

"You can't arrest for resisting arrest without violence unless you have a meritorious arrest; well, the arrest fails because what they were doing is absolutely protected by one of the most cherished amendments we have, which is the first amendment," Herrera said.

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That includes the friends' right to peaceably, even if it involves a web craze that not everyone's heard about. Wright said, the judge, when he got the case, laughed when he heard the details.

"Yeah, he actually didn't know what the Harlem Shake was," Wright said.

NBC 6 reached out to Hialeah Police for comment, who said they were not commenting at this time, and that the investigation has been closed.
 

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