A chaotic scene erupted at a Cleveland area mall the day after Christmas after a fight broke out and police were called to the scene for a report of shots fired.
According to Fox 8 Cleveland, more than 500 teens were involved in a disturbance at Beachwood Place, an upscale mall in a suburb south of Cleveland Monday night. About a dozen police officers from Beachwood, along with others from nearby communities, responded shortly before 7:00 p.m.
The scene was chaotic, as terrified shoppers rushed to exit the mall, many of them apparently believing that shots had been fired.
They shooting in Beachwood Mall tho… 🤔🤔🤔 pic.twitter.com/MNBEes9GIp
— DOE BEEZY/FREEBANDZ (@DoeBoyOfficial) December 27, 2016
I picked the wrong day to go to Beachwood mall 😐 pic.twitter.com/QMTPipGmYq
— Michael Finley (@MikeFinley__) December 27, 2016
smh they was shooting in Beachwood Mall (Cleveland) pic.twitter.com/I8TjjsUPZB
— ONG.BIG💲HANE (@BigShane337) December 27, 2016
Police later confirmed that no shots had been fired at the scene, however, according to Cleveland.com, at least one juvenile is in custody “in connection with the fight that broke out just after 6:30 p.m. near the mall’s food court.” He is also accused of assaulting a police officer who tried to break up the fight.
Pepper spray was used to disperse the crowd and gain control of the situation and the mall was placed on lockdown. Afterward, one man and a police officer were treated for pepper spray burns, a Beachwood fire captain said.
Police said they were aware of the possibility of an incident because of chatter on Twitter and Instagram. Beachwood police said it was “loosely organized on social media.”
Beachwood joins other cities around the country where post-Christmas fights erupted including in Aurora, Colorado; Memphis, Tennessee; Fayetteville, North Carolina; Elizabeth, New Jersey; and Fort Worth Texas.
In response to a request for more information about the disturbance at the mall, Beachwood Place sent the following statement to WOIO Cleveland 19 on Tuesday:
— Dani Carlson (@DaniCarlsonSays) December 27, 2016