Last Friday, a pedicab driver on 5th Avenue and 60th Street in Manhattan who wanted to go a bit faster became stuck behind a carriage horse that was going a bit too slow. Not happy with his decelerated situation, the pedicab decided to go around the carriage…and this is when the trouble started.

Pedicab driver Yacouba Coulibaly claims that he was clipped by the carriage while, at the same time, noticing that the horse was suffering from fatigue and abuse; hence, the reason for the horse’s slowness. Coulibaly says that he “grabbed the reins and said, ‘Stop! Please stop, or I’m calling the cops.’” One word led to another before culminating in a spirited session of fisticuffs between Coulibaly and carriage driver Dermont Kelley. Police arrived and arrested Coulibaly.

Even though both drivers admitted to throwing punches, only Couilibaly was taken into custody; the carriage horse driver, Kelley, (insofar as I know) wasn’t charged with anything. Why?

Coulibaly claims that the horse was suffering from fatigue and abuse. If that’s true, why did he expect the horse to go faster? And how was his pedicab clipped by a carriage that he could have so easily overtaken in the first place?

While it’s true that many NYC carriage horses are indeed abused, it’s also true that personal feuds are occurring between pedicab and carriage horse drivers all over the city; both looking for a piece of the action in an extremely competitive venue. Perhaps Coulibaly was feeling exceptionally ambitious last Friday and was out looking to create an incident.

Related: Hold Your Horses

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