Flash Mob Hits Maryland 7-Eleven for the Second Time

Police in Maryland report a Flash Mob attack at a local 7-11 over the weekend, according to Fox News. Surveillance video shows about 50 people casually wandering around stealing items off the shelves at around 11 p.m. on Saturday night. When police arrived the mob scattered, and only six were later picked up with items they couldn’t provide receipts for. Rather than a random incident, this is the second time in three months that it has occurred in Maryland, with a 7-11 in a nearby town being robbed by about 30 people, who just walked in and began casually taking things and leaving with them without paying.

Flash mobs using social media to gather and unexpectedly sing Handel’s “Messiah” in the food court of the local Mall, or play amusing pranks in Grand Central Station are charming and most people enjoy them, but the new trend toward flash mob crimes is an entirely different proposition, and it appears to be increasing across the country. Reports are coming in of anywhere from dozens to hundreds of youths suddenly appearing and committing assaults, robberies and other crimes against by-standers.

Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter recently put in place strict curfews, says The Christian Science Monitor, after a July 29th flash mob attack involving about 30 youths who beat and robbed people downtown after another group randomly beat a nurse walking to work in the middle of the afternoon.

According to the StarTribune, a flash mob of at least 25 in Minneapolis attacked what is known as the Pedal Pub, a combination bicycle/bar pedaled by about a dozen people. As it rolled along, the youths jumped on, grabbing at belongings, harassing riders and stealing a BlackBerry. Other flash mob crimes, some quite violent, are being investigated in Los Angeles, Chicago, Cleveland, Washington and Milwaukee.

As more and more of the perpetrators appear to be young black men, the concerns are growing that these are racially motivated hate crimes rather than random groups. John Terrett, a correspondent for Aljazeera, points out that while civil liberties and youth rights organizations are calling for restraint by city officials, the many surveillance cameras make it impossible to deny that most of the flash mobs are made up of black youths assaulting white people. Columnist Gregory Kane of the Washington Examiner quotes self-styled black leader Jesse Jackson as saying that “To be a racist you have to have power. One cannot equate black fugitives from slavery fighting their masters as racists,” yet one of the black teenagers in a violent and unprovoked attack at the Wisconsin State Fair in August confessed that “race hatred motivated his attacks on whites,” according to R. Cort Kirkwood of The New American.

In the Wisconsin incident, large groups of black teens possibly numbering in the hundreds, targeted whites leaving the fairgrounds to beat and rob,on the premise that they were “easy targets.” According to witnesses, a black security guard stood by and did nothing as a white teen was beaten, kicked repeatedly while on the ground, and then dragged over and thrown in the bushes. Police in Wisconsin have decided to seek hate-crimes charges against several assailants.

As flash mob attacks proliferate around the country, cities are beginning to fight back using tactics such as curfews, increasing arrests and making use of hate crime laws. More officials of every race are saying they will not tolerate flash mob crime and uniting in their efforts to stop these increasingly dangerous attacks.

Perry Chiaramonte, Second Maryland 7-Eleven Hit in Flash Mob Attack, Police Say, Fox News

Patrik Jonsson, Flash mob attacks: Rising concern over black teen involvement, The Christian Science Monitor

Matt McKinney, Flash mob of at least 25 attacks the Pedal Pub, StarTribune minneapolis

Gregory Kane, Rev. Jackson would condone flash mob attacks, The Examiner washington examiner

R. Cort Kirkwood, Flash-Mob Attacks at Wis. Fair: Police to File Hate-crimes Charges, The New American

John Terrett, Panic Amid U.S. Flash Mob Attacks, Aljazeera

Questions Arise Over Whether ‘Flash Mob’ Attacks in U.S. Cities Motivated by Race, Fox News

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