Maybe he was tired of being tickled.
Maybe he finally realized it isn’t really “Elmo’s World” after all.
Whatever it was, the lovable Sesame Street character snapped and folks strolling the storied streets of New York City got a little more than they bargained for when Elmo was unleashed and the red fur began to fly.
As the NY Times reports, the NYPD had to take Elmo down after he exploded in an obscenity-laced racist rant on Sunday.
The scene: Cookie Monster lounges against a stop sign. A life size Dora the Explorer lingers on the edge of one of the world’s most famous streets. And Elmos abound.
If you’ve been to Times Square you’re likely familiar with the cast of characters that populate the streets, posing with tourists for tips. Obviously the friendlier these impersonators are the more cash they’re likely to pocket. But one Elmo behaved so badly this week tourists not only kept walking, but fellow Elmos backed away.
Apparently, the offending Elmo was first kicked out of Central Park by cops for saying all sorts of horrible things. Things every Sesame Street-watching kid knows Elmo shouldn’t be saying. Then he moseyed on down to Times Square and, in between posing for photos and harassing tourists for tips, as the NY Times reports, “Elmo would often treat tourists and fellow Sesame Street impersonators alike to xenophobic and anti-Semitic tirades.”
Luis, a 25-year-old Peruvian who dons an Elmo suit each day, says Bad Elmo would shout “crazy stuff” about the other impersonators. “He would stop and say that we were all illegal immigrants and that people shouldn’t have their photos taken with us,” said Luis, who would not give his last name. Whenever he saw the shouting Elmo, Luis said, he would move to another part of Times Square.
This isn’t the first time a Bad Elmo has terrorized NYC streets either! So consider yourself warned, parents. You never know who’s underneath the seemingly friendly fur.
YouTube videos are circulating showing the breakdown of Elmo before cops ushered him to a hospital for a psychiatric evaluation. You can hear children crying, people laughing uncomfortably and others gasping until ultimately police led Bad Elmo away and the crowd cheered.
“That is the scariest Elmo I’ve ever seen in my life!” a woman gasps.
You can see it unfold in the video below:
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You can also find Monica on her personal blog, The Girl Who.