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NYC subway performers say they're over-policed; complaints come amid focus on small offenses

Acrobats, dancers and musicians who perform in New York City's subway system are decrying what they say is heavy-handed policing.

Several performers championed their cause outside City Hall Tuesday. Police had no immediate response.

More than 240 subway performers have been arrested so far this year. That's about four times as many as the same period last year.

Transit rules generally allow performing for tips in parts of subway stations, but not in trains or with amplifiers, unless artists have permits.

Some performers say they comply but still get arrested.

Others acknowledge breaking the rules but say the police should focus on crime, not on entertainment.

Mayor Bill de Blasio has said these may not seem like big offenses, "but breaking the law is breaking the law."

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