Flash Mobs Have Police on Alert, City Fed Up

UPenn receives word of “large gathering of juveniles” plan to come Wednesday, but nothing happened

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    NBCPhiladelphia.com
    Philadelphia Police stepped up patrols in the the area of 40th and Market Streets Wednesday after word came that a flash mob was set to descend on University City.

    The University of Pennsylvania and Philadelphia Police were on high alert after rumors swirled that a "large gathering of juveniles" were set to descend on University City Wednesday afternoon.

    Penn safety officials warned students and staff of the potential mob through a campus-wide message early Wednesday.

    Various messages on Twitter warn teens planning to swarm yet another part of the city Wednesday that police have the heads up on their dangerous game.

    Nutter: Flash Mobs Will Ruin Your Life

    [PHI] Nutter: Flash Mobs Will Ruin Your Life
    Mayor Michael Nutter and Commissioner Charles Ramsey have strong words for teens and their parents who are thinking of participating in a flash mob.

    “Philly flashmob folx, be careful PPS and Phila Police are going to be there today,” a Twitter used named “mattack” tweeted at about 12:50 p.m.

    The university’s division of public safety said it worked with Philadelphia and SEPTA authorities to make sure there is a large police presence at 40th and Market streets this afternoon in case another violent group of teens convene.

    The university’s site stated that they received word “through various sources”  that a flash mob was set to form between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. They recommended that people plan their routes away from 40th Street. Fortunately, the mob never formed.

    Word of Wednesday's potential mob came just hours before Mayor Michael Nutter and Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey held a press conference outlining plans to crush any rowdy groups before they even form.

    "We will never ever accept inappropriate behavior," Mayor Nutter said."Stop the stupidity, cut it out."

    The mayor even went as far to say that those who take part in a flash mob, will have their lives "ruined."

    "We're not messing around and you and your parent are gonna find yourself in serious trouble if we have any more of this kind of activity," Mayor Nutter said.

    A flash mob of teens took over South Street Saturday night, terrorizing pedestrians and employees of area stores and restaurants.

    A judge passed out stiff sentences to 10 teens Tuesday in connection to another flash mob incident that engulfed the City Hall area on Feb. 16.

    Officials want to ensure a fourth flash mob never forms. Police will continue to enforce the city's curfew law which states those under the age of 17 must be off the streets between 10:30 p.m. and 6 a.m. weekdays and from midnight until 6 a.m. on weekends.

    "Don't think for a minute we're gonna allow you to assault others on the street, destroy property and do all those kinds of things that take away from everyone else's quality of life," Comm. Ramsey said.

    City leaders aren't the only people fed up with the attacks, residents say the whole situation is simply ridiculous.

    "You can't even walk down here, you've gotta turn around every five seconds because you might be getting hit with something," Michael Gault said.

    Anyone with information or tips on possible flash mobs are asked to call the Philadelphia Police at 215.686.TIPS.