A roving teenage flash mob attacked random pedestrians, threw a university cop to the ground, and punched a police horse in the face last week when they were unable to get into a movie theater.
Four teenagers were arrested after some 200 high school students gathered outside a movie theater and began attacking and robing Temple University college students and other people in the crowd.
The teenage flash mob materialized on the Temple University campus after being summoned by social media and became angry when they couldn’t get inside to see their movie.
About 50 high school students were rounded up and arrested after the bizarre attacks, but so far only four have been charged in incidents ranging from robberies to assault.
Philadelphia police report a total of six injured Temple University college students along with a police officer and police horse.
Three college students were thrown to the ground where the teenage mob punched and kicked them sending Temple University student Christina Lauletta to the hospital, her father told The Philadelphia Inquirer.
“These sick animals held her down and kicked and stomped on her repeatedly. Every part of her body is badly bruised. It makes me cry just thinking about it.”
She was rescued by employees from a nearby pizza shop who chased off the violent high school students.
In a separate incident, a 15-year-old attacked a police officer who was chasing him off her bicycle; he was caught and charged with aggravated assault and resisting arrest.
Another teenager, this one 16, punched a police horse twice in the face; he was caught and charged with assaulting a police service animal.
A couple walking on the college campus was attacked by two teenagers; the boyfriend managed to run away, but the female was caught and grabbed by the hair before being beaten and kicked, according to NBC Philadelphia.
“I somehow got to the other side of Oxford Street by the time they got me to the ground. I remember shoes coming for my face and after that I heard other kids from the group saying ‘Yo chill, yo chill, it’s just a girl’ and they pulled my attackers off me.”
Three other victims told police they were assaulted by a large group of teenagers who snatched their cell phones, wallets, and a Bluetooth speaker; no arrests were made in that incident.
Temple campus safety director Charles Leone told Time the groups of violent teenagers played hide and seek from law enforcement.
“It’s very concerning that you can get a group of juveniles to pull together that quickly and some become violent.”
Temple University police are coordinating with the Philadelphia Police Department to protect college students in the wake of the teenage flash mob attacks especially with the upcoming Halloween holiday. Temple serves about 34,000 full-time students.
This isn’t the first time Philadelphia has witnessed teenage flash mobs turning violent for no apparent reason. In April, 2013 a group of 200 teenagers gathered in Center City to fight, harass local businesses, and throw bottles at police officers, local businessman Drew Carballo told NBC Philadelphia.
“There were about 200 kids throwing bottles. The police were around. You can tell they were getting a little overwhelmed at first. They definitely had their hands full for a good 30 minutes.”
In 2011, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter was forced to announce a curfew to curb teen violence after a number of flash mob attacks in Center City and University City.
When the curfew was enacted Nutter scolded Philadelphia parents telling them they needed to be present in their children’s lives and not just an ATM.
What do you think of the violent teenage flash mobs in Philadelphia?
[Featured Image by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images]