Philly Cracks Down on Teen Mobs

Police will step up patrols in Center City in the wake of Tuesday's chaos

In the wake of Tuesday's flash mob chaos in Center City, Philadelphia Police vow to step up their presence along the downtown corridor to keep the peace.

Up to 100 high school students crashed East Market Street Tuesday -- brawling, stopping traffic, assaulting pedestrians and vandalizing stores.

One teen had to be hospitalized after being kicked in the face and police were forced to shut down Market Street near 13th Street while they brought a fraction of the terrors into custody.

In all, 16 teens were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct, but some had felony riot charges added Wednesday.

"We're not going to allow these kids to disrupt the quality of life in Center City or any area," Dep. Comm. Kevin Bethel said.

Police say they will have more officers patrol the underground mall after school hours to combat the growing problem of disruptive teens.

It was initially thought that the teens organized from three area high schools, but investigators found that actually seven schools were involved.

"We're working close with the school board to see what intelligence they can provide to see if we can pinpoint how this particular incident originated," Insp. Edward Kachigian said.

Police say they will continue to work with the district to try and get a heads up on the mobs before they form.

"This is not going to be a game of tag," Dep. Comm. Bethel said.

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