CRF Blog

Tweet fueled crime wave, LAPD says

by Bill Hayes

In Tweet fueled crime wave, LAPD says, the Los Angeles Times reports on “flash mobs,” which have led to waves of crime in various cities.

So-called “flash mob” crime rampages organized through social media have been a problem in other cities, including Chicago, Philadelphia and Washington. In April, 28 Chicago youths were arrested on suspicion of attacking pedestrians along the city’s famed Magnificent Mile. Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn signed legislation in May enacting stiffer penalties for people who text or use social media to organize mob attacks.

Until now, flash mob crime incidents have not been a major problem in Los Angeles, LAPD officials said.

The problems began shortly after 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, when 911 dispatchers started receiving reports of problems on Hollywood Boulevard near Vine Street — a stretch full of restaurants, clubs and shops. A group of a few dozen young people, callers said, was running in and out of traffic, knocking people over on the sidewalks and snatching their belongings. Some stole food and souvenirs from stores as they went. [more]