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Curtis Sliwa, wearing Guardian Angels beret, defies de Blasio no-swim order in Coney Island

Curtis Sliwa of New York's Guardian Angels swims at the Coney Island beach Sunday, May 24, 2020, to protest New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio not opening city beaches for swimming and more amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Posted at 11:51 AM, May 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-25 11:51:05-04

CONEY ISLAND, Brooklyn — Curtis Sliwa donned a wetsuit and his trademark Guardian Angels red beret and strode into the water at Coney Island in defiance of Mayor Bill de Blasio's no-swimming order.

A crowd cheered Sliwa on as several city Parks Department officers tried to order the Guardian Angels founder and New York mayoral candidate out of the surf Sunday.

Sliwa told the New York Post he was making the point that it's unfair people can swim in Long Island and at the Jersey Shore, but not at Coney Island.

De Blasio last week threatened summonses for violators of his no-swim order aimed at keeping the coronavirus under control.

The mayor's beach restrictions come as Gov. Andrew Cuomo allowed state-run and local New York beaches to open for the holiday weekend, like those on Long Island.