A self-proclaimed actress who unleashed bugs on a crowded D train last week, later saying it was all a prank,could face reckless endangerment charges, according to a published report.
Zaida Pugh, 21, apologized the day after she boarded an evening rush hour D train dressed as a homeless woman, pretending to sell crickets and worms. The stunt was reportedly a viral video to expose the plight of homeless people. Teens who knock the bugs out of her hands, sending them flying all over the train car, were allegedly part of the act on Aug. 25.
“The point of the video was to show how people react to homeless people, how people look down at them. It was also to show how people are so fixated on recording stuff, instead of helping other people. Even before I posted the video, people had their own videos up,” Pugh told Gothamist.
A panicked straphangerpulled the emergency brake, stranding the train without air conditioningon the Manhattan Bridge for about 30 minutes. Pugh, who has performed similar video stunts over the last four years, also said she peed herself as part of the act.
When the train pulled into the DeKalb Avenue station, Pugh was taken to Methodist Hospital for a psychiatric evaluation,DNAinfo reported. According to the website, police, who over the weekend were exploring charging her, are now specifically looking into slapping her with reckless endangerment charges. At least one of her friends who participated in the prank could also face charges.
“You can’t yell ‘fire’ in crowded theaters, and you can’t pull stunts that cause harm to people and stop subways and inconvenience thousands of people,” a law enforcement official told DNAinfo.