By Sabina Mollot
While SantaCon largely steered clear of the neighborhoods north of the East Village this past weekend, thanks to a widely circulated video on YouTube there’s evidence of a brawl between several Santas near Union Square. On Saturday at 8 p.m., the evening of this year’s annual pub crawl, the not quite jolly old St. Nicks got into a beat-down at the corner of East 16th Street and Third Avenue. The video shows half a dozen costumed men punching and kicking each other in the snow outside Joe Junior’s restaurant, before they eventually run or walk off.
According to Deputy Inspector Dave Ehrenberg, the commanding officer of the 13th Precinct, police had gotten a call about the fight, but by the time officers arrived, it was over.
“We are currently investigating that incident,” Ehrenberg said. “We’ve interviewed the person who took the video.” But, he added, “We have no victims in that no one’s come forward.”
As for whether or not he thought it was related to SantaCon, which ended earlier, Ehrenberg said, “A bunch of Santas beating the crap out of each other? Probably.”
Still, he noted, as far as the 13th Precinct went, the naughty behavior was an isolated incident. The precinct covers the north side of 14th Street up to 30th Street from the East River to Seventh Avenue. SantaCon’s route included the East Village and Lower East Side as well as parts of Brooklyn this year.
In response to the street fight, a rep for SantaCon told Town & Village, “No arrests have been reported to us. We have all seen the unfortunate fight video that took place outside of the suggested route and hours after the event had ended. It saddens Santa that these types of people put on Santa suits.”