(As originally published with more pre-produced, scene and booking photos, Wed, September 27th 2023, 11:15 PM EDT)
PHILADELPHIA (TND) — The faces of dozens of people facing criminal charges in Philadelphia after a night of flash mob-style ransacking have been released, 24 hours after the violence.
Police said they made at least 52 arrests and a spokesperson for the district attorney’s office said charges had already been filed against at least 30 people. Those are the people with the booking photos.
Most of the defendants face burglary counts, but there are also charges of rioting, disorderly conduct, theft, and even one charge involving a stolen vehicle.
Authorities called it a night of social media-fueled mayhem in which groups of thieves, apparently working together, smashed their way into stores in several parts of the city. They were seen stuffing plastic bags with merchandise and running away.
Dozens of stores were targeted, including Footlocker, Lululemon and Apple. People broke into at least 18 state-run liquor stores.
Three of the suspects are underage: a 16-year-old boy and two 14 year olds: a boy and a girl.
According to police, a crowd gathered downtown in what’s called Center City shortly before 8 p.m. Officers stopped a group of males “dressed in black attire and wearing masks.”
Then came reports and 911 calls about the Foot Locker store. Police found it had been “ransacked in a coordinated attack.”
By 8:12 p.m., police responded to similar calls at Lululemon, where officers wrestled a few suspects to the ground as people streamed outside. Some of the suspected thieves slipped past police and got away.
Then, police were called to the Apple Store, where thieves forced their way in and made off with phones and tablets, then smashed them on the ground when they realized the devices were disabled and their alarms were going off. Social media video showed much of the chaos in those locations.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.