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Homeless man Leo, also called “The Journeyman Hacker,” was arrested yesterday morning at 12:30am in New York for “trespassing.” He is renown on the Internet for choosing to allow entrepreneur Patrick McConlongue to give him free programmer coding lessons.
Patrick had provided Leo with a laptop at his expense, and free software, books, Wi-Fi, and one hour lessons each day starting in August. While Patrick had drawn criticism for various reasons, he actually was investing time and energy to help Leo excel at a good job and the choice was mutual. Many found the arrangement inspiring and the two men drew lots of rousing support.
Leo was set to go on The Today Show on Wednesday morning until police arrested him and confiscated his laptop and a new prototype phone gifted to him. Patrick fought to have him released and push the hearing up so Leo could do his interview. Read our previous report HERE.
Leo had been arrested in a park near Chelsea Piers for sleeping on a park bench after it closed to the public, according to NYPD Officer Carr of the 10th precinct.
Leo has been released and will make his appearance on The Today Show.
At 10am today, Patrick made this update:
Leo was released early this morning, in an incredible turn around time. He was taken to the hospital in the middle of the night for throwing up (sounds like stress) but the hearing after went quickly. Leo said, “The Police were doing their job, the officer who arrested me was just following orders and was very polite.”
The laptop and prototype phone were not returned but after walking back to the 10th precinct this morning, we were told some paperwork needed to be changed for it to be released and to return at 12:00AM to talk with the arresting officer.
Business Insider reported:
McConlogue said he went to the precinct but was unable to retrieve Leo or Leo’s personal belongings, including the Samsung computer McConlogue purchased himself. Officer Carr said he was unable to return the computer because McConlogue could not provide a serial number for the device, though he did show Carr a receipt for the computer
Really?? You really think it’s stolen, Cops? The receipt for proof, the fact that you remember taking this man’s possessions, the evidence the whole Internet has been watching for a month and soon millions on The Today Show…None of that changes anything?
The two implored respect for the police and drew different kinds of jeers for their emphatic defense of the cops who arrested Leo. It almost sounded like a PSA to comply with the NYPD. They expressed sentiments for NYPD such as comparing them to 9/11 heroes and: “have faith in NYPD,” “they did nothing wrong,” “just doing their jobs,” “just following orders…” Whose orders?
Patrick made a point about the police action being part of an imperfect system. Meaning, they do not deserve scrutiny – it’s not their faults. Yet, how do broken systems continue? By its many enforcers who push empathy aside to “follow orders.” They did have a choice in the situation and they CAN give back Leo’s belongings.
Unfortunately, there is a national coordinated effort toward “sustainable development” plans to sweep the homeless away, even plans to indefinitely detain them in a camp. You see what a ruckus people had to cause to get Leo out. But not every homeless person has that kind of support.
Captain David Miller
230 West 20th Street, New York, NY, 10011-3502
Precinct: (212) 741-8211
Read Other Articles by Heather Callaghan