Barber paid in hugs is kicked out of Conn. park

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Associated Press

Posted on June 13, 2013 at 10:04 AM

Updated Thursday, Jun 13 at 10:05 AM

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — An 82-year-old good Samaritan who has been giving free haircuts to the homeless for 25 years has been kicked out of a Hartford park by city health officials.

Anthony Cymerys (sih-MEHR'-ihs) is known as "Joe the Barber." He's been a fixture every Wednesday for years at Bushnell Park, where his friends also hand out food to the needy. The only fee he charges is a hug.

But shortly after Cymerys set up shop for his Wednesday appearance this week, he says health officials and police told him and his friends to leave because they didn't have permits.

A city health official didn't return messages Thursday. A spokeswoman for Mayor Pedro Segarra says she's looking into what happened.

Cymerys says he hopes to continue cutting hair at a local shelter.

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