Riots broke out at at least a dozen malls following the Christmas holiday. Police are investigating social media, where the fights and riots were suspected of being organized.
A mall outside Cleveland, Ohio, was “placed on lockdown” after a “large group of juveniles” caused a disturbance around 6 p.m. in the evening. Beachwood, Ohio, police said the disturbance was “loosely organized on social media.”
In Aurora, Illinois, police were called to handle a “an unruly crowd in the common area,” and a food fight as well as “several other smaller altercations” at the Fox Valley Mall. The police “made the immediate decision to evacuate and close the mall for the safety of all.” More than 1,000 mall goers watched the disturbance. Seven “juveniles” were arrested after 75 police officers were dispatched from local police departments to get the situation under control.
Meanwhile, in Aurora, Colorado, the Town Center Mall saw some action and was closed after a “series of skirmishes and a large disturbance that officials believe began on social media.”
Police were called in from all over the city to help when a fight involving 500 people broke out at the food court. An off-duty police officer was surrounded by an “unruly crowd” after the officer tried to detain one of the fighters. Five arrests were made.
Moving along to Texas, reports of shots fired and fights closed the Hulen Mall in Ft. Worth. According to social media, a large fight broke out in front of Red Robin. No injuries were reported.
“Officers were first called to a report of gunfire in the parking lot but found no evidence any shots were fired, said Fort Worth police officer Tamara Valle,” reported NBCDFW. As many as 150 teenagers were involved in the riots.
hulen mall wild for this one lmao pic.twitter.com/4rD4ZO5h1H
— cyn (@CyNinja) December 27, 2016
And these are just a handful of the incidents.
The Associated Press reported similar incidents at malls in New York, New Jersey and North Carolina, where chaos erupted at a mall in Fayetteville and emergency medical personnel were called in to assist someone who had a medical episode while fleeing.
In Memphis, Tennessee, police arrested several people following fights at two malls there. No one was injured and no gunshots were fired, despite reports indicating otherwise, according to The AP.
Maybe it’s best to shop online next year?