Cookie Monster Arrested, Accused of Cursing at Family in Times Square

Monday, 08 Apr 2013 02:50 PM

By Alexandra Ward

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A man dressed as Cookie Monster from "Sesame Street" was arrested Sunday after he was accused of pushing a 2-year-old and hurling profanities at the boy's mother during an altercation in Times Square.

Osvaldo Quiroz-Lopez, 33, reportedly posed for a photo with 2-year-old Samay Katkar of Stamford, Conn., Sunday in Times Square but became enraged when Katkar's mother wouldn’t hand over a $2 tip, police said.

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Quiroz-Lopez started yelling at the family, calling the boy a "bastard" and the mother a "b—," according to the New York Daily News. He then pushed the child to the ground.

Quiroz-Lopez was charged with assault and endangering the welfare of a child.

The incident sparked instant outrage online.

"Those characters run around Times Square with no background checks or regulation," one person commented on the Daily News story. "Hey [Mayor] Bloomberg, this is a issue that needs to address now."

"'Sesame Street' is no longer safe for our children," another said.

This isn't the first time a crazed, costumed character has caused a scene in New York City. Last summer, an "emotionally disturbed" Elmo impersonator was carted away in an ambulance after shouting obscenities at people at the Central Park Zoo. The evil Elmo reportedly tormented tourists for years, demanding they take pictures with him and tip.

"I'm not being rude," the imposter told the Daily News in 2010. He refused to give his real name or take off his costume head. "Taking an Elmo picture without paying is rude. It's called making a living."

In December, a performer dressed as Super Mario and carrying a stash of marijuana allegedly groped a woman in Times Square.

In February, also in Times Square, a man dressed as Spider-Man was arrested for allegedly punching a woman in the face over a tip.

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Related stories:

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Kevin Clash: Voice of Elmo Cleared of Underage Sex Accusations

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