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Naked yoga OK in San Francisco

Reuters, USA
Sep. 22, 2004
www.cnn.com

ReligionNewsBlog.com • Friday September 24, 2004

SAN FRANCISCO, California (Reuters) — Nudists, grab your yoga mats and head for San Francisco.

City prosecutors Wednesday said it was not illegal to perform naked yoga in the city — even at the crowded tourist destination of Fisherman’s Wharf.

Prosecutors dropped charges against a limber nudist, known locally as the “Naked Yoga Guy,” who made a habit of striking yoga poses in the buff in order to promote a book and his lifestyle.

The Naked Yoga Guy, whose name is George Monty Davis, had stripped to stretch nearby Fisherman’s Wharf, prompting a public complaint. But prosecutors decided they had a weak public nuisance case against him because local laws do not bar public nudity.

“Simply being naked on the street is not a crime in San Francisco,” said Debbie Mesloh, a spokeswoman for the district attorney’s office.

“To bring a case, a person would have to exhibit lewd behavior, block traffic or impede pedestrians on a sidewalk, something along those lines.”

In another case involving a Los Angeles teenager who dropped his pants to expose his bottom, or “moon,” passing motorists from a nearby sidewalk, a California appellate court ruled nudity itself is not a crime, Mesloh said.

Davis could not immediately be reached for comment.

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