VIDEO: Kerfuffle in the USA over topless woman cyclist

Stacey Schnee says women should be able to go bare-chested too - and her campaign is getting plenty of attention

by Sarah Barth   September 21, 2013  

Topless cyclist.png

A woman in the US has caused consternation by riding her bike topless in the name of equality.

Stacey Schnee, from Massachusetts, was pulled over by police for riding without a shirt on, although she was wearing a pair of pasties: flesh coloured stickers over her nipples.

Officers decided not to arrest her, despite the fact that motorists were slowing down and taking photos and video of her.

They did however contact the district attorney's office to check whether they needed to try to bring charges.

"We did have people coming into lobby calling on phone, vehicles driving by, with people taking pictures. One vehicle turned around to take more pictures," said James Hurley, Leicester Police Chief.

Read more: http://www.wptv.com/dpp/news/local_news/water_cooler/stacey-schnee-tople...

Stacey told WPTV: “My stand was because my nipples were covered I wasn't doing anything wrong. I’m also making a statement for topless equality to get the word out that women should be able to go topless.” 

According to the BBC, public nudity is not necessarily an offence in the UK, should any riders fancy recreating the stunt over this side of the pond.

Under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 it is not an offence to be naked in public in England and Wales. It becomes an offence if it can be proved the person stripped off with the intention to cause distress, alarm or outrage.

Then they run the risk of three possible offences, says a spokesman for law firm Kingsley Napley. These are:

  • Indecent exposure - an offence under section 66 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003
  • Intentional harassment, alarm or distress under section 4A of the Public Order Act 1986
  • "Outraging public decency" under common law

In Scottish law there is no statutory offence, just the common law offence of offending public decency - a strand of the breach of the peace. The test is essentially the same as in English law - that a member of the public has been put in a state of fear or alarm.

10 user comments

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She's perfectly safe from the puritans this side of the Atlantic at least as she has one of their magic plastic hats on.

posted by hillboy [11 posts]
21st September 2013 - 14:09

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If that wasn't enough, Stacey Schnee is transgender and surgically altered. The local newspaper says: "The 38-year-old single mother of two, 8 and 10, routinely walks around her Webster Square neighborhood bare-chested, rides her bike, mows the lawn, hangs out in her yard. If it's warm out, off comes the shirt, bra and all. She often wears pasties — small stickers that cover up the nipples and areolae of the breasts. She knows what she's doing. It's a way to skirt around the letter of the law and she was wearing them when police pulled her over. I've been wandering around my property topless, and naked sometimes, too," she said."

Shut up legs, you don't get a vote.

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posted by ridein [48 posts]
21st September 2013 - 16:23

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I hate to point this out but this is not a cycling story, this is someone making a cry for help

posted by arfa [485 posts]
21st September 2013 - 21:19

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ridein wrote:
If that wasn't enough, Stacey Schnee is transgender and surgically altered. The local newspaper says: "The 38-year-old single mother of two, 8 and 10, routinely walks around her Webster Square neighborhood bare-chested, rides her bike, mows the lawn, hangs out in her yard. If it's warm out, off comes the shirt, bra and all. She often wears pasties — small stickers that cover up the nipples and areolae of the breasts. She knows what she's doing. It's a way to skirt around the letter of the law and she was wearing them when police pulled her over. I've been wandering around my property topless, and naked sometimes, too," she said."

Hmmm, I wondered why a lady might want to get her norks out. And I also thought they looked rather 'surgical' too.
Fair play to her if that is what she wants to do. I just don't see it taking off amongst the wider female population. So American Puritans can rest easy.
I think that as she is cycling around topless it seems to be a cycling related story.

posted by Colin Peyresourde [1120 posts]
22nd September 2013 - 1:11

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I always find this stuff ridiculous. Drivers were taking photos and videos of her while driving - and the police are pondering charging *her*? What about charging every one of those drivers with careless driving, or whatever the Stateside equivalent is?

Boardman CX Team '14 | Cannondale CAAD8 '12 (written off, SMIDSY) | Scott Sportster '08

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posted by Gizmo_ [826 posts]
22nd September 2013 - 16:26

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My main concern is that the US is stealing our towns.

posted by merckxissimo [59 posts]
22nd September 2013 - 19:26

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The fact that she's transgender only strengthens her point.

She just wants to keep doing something that she would have probably been doing all the time before undergoing surgery without anyone batting an eyelid. But just because she had some sort of surgery done, it suddenly becomes unacceptable. I think it shows how absurd this situation is, and in fact no different at all to women not being allowed to go out without burqas in certain countries.

posted by enas [4 posts]
23rd September 2013 - 7:25

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100% support her efforts to reverse this obviously sexist trend...however if she is successful in changing attitudes, we may have to revisit our rules on lycra cycling shorts for the gents...could be embarrasing

posted by scrapper [60 posts]
23rd September 2013 - 8:41

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......unless those "pasties" are hi-viz, she is in danger of instant vehicular death (despite the magic hat).

Edgeley

posted by Edgeley [160 posts]
23rd September 2013 - 17:18

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But why do you want to be called Loretta Stan?

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posted by cidermart [460 posts]
23rd September 2013 - 20:08

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