Image: Commuters on train
Mary Altaffer  /  AP
A commuter, center, looks at participants in Improv Everywhere's 5th Annual No Pants Subway Ride as they ride the uptown 6 train Sunday in New York City.
updated 1/22/2006 11:32:49 PM ET 2006-01-23T04:32:49

From the waist up, they looked like perfectly normal commuters. That wasn’t good enough for police.

Eight pranksters who dropped their pants and showed their underwear on the subway on Sunday were taken into custody and issued summonses for disorderly conduct. All were ultimately released, said Improv Everywhere, the group that organized the stunt.

The group said more than 160 riders participated in the fifth annual No Pants Subway Ride before police halted their No. 6 train about 5 p.m.

Charlie Todd, who founded Improv Everywhere in 2001, said it’s not his group’s intent to offend. He said he wants to create scenes of chaos and joy in public places around New York.

“It was our intent to make people laugh,” he said. “We try to give people a great story to tell.”

Todd, a teacher and performer, said the police overreacted when they turned a harmless event into something that inconvenienced lots of subway riders. A judge will determine whether those issued summonses will be punished.

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