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Art 'critic' arrested after causing ruckus at Art Fair on the Square, police say

Art 'critic' arrested after causing ruckus at Art Fair on the Square, police say

  • Updated

A homeless man sleeping on a bench behind an artist's booth at Art Fair on the Square ended up in jail after he allegedly fought police trying to stop him from ripping on the artists and fairgoers.

William Zamie, 62, no permanent address, was arrested on two counts of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest at about 3:12 p.m. Sunday on North Carroll Street on Capitol Square, Madison police said.

According to a police news release, a jewelry maker from Florida flagged down a police officer Sunday afternoon because Zamie was yelling derogatory remarks to potential customers after he had slept most of the day on the bench behind the jewelry maker's display.

"He said the artist 'was not selling real art' and the handmade jewelry was really 'mass-produced junk,'" said police spokesman Joel DeSpain.

The critic then entered the artist's tent to continue his harangue.

"He told a customer 'all these artists steal from each other and what you are buying isn't real art,'" DeSpain said.

The responding officer gave Zamie a chance to leave, but he apparently didn't take advantage of the opportunity.

"He told the officer 'OK, grandpa, I'll get on my way 'cuz I don't want you getting all excited and having a heart attack,'" DeSpain said.

Zamie went back to the bench and slowly started putting his belongings into a sack, but kept on jawing with the officer, making it clear he didn't intend to leave.

"The officer grasped his wrist, and he started thrashing, kicking and shouting 'Police! Riot!,'" DeSpain said.

Other police officers dealing with an apparent drug overdose nearby responded to the shouting, and helped take Zamie off the Square and on to jail.

The woman who apparently had taken drugs, Ashley Deangelis, 26, of Antigo, ended up in jail as well, charged with possession of drug paraphernalia and felony bail jumping.


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