As Philadelphia police work to crackdown on teen mobs, the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office is backing up their efforts by charging 23 people with felony rioting after police broke up a flash mob in Center City Wednesday.
After a large group of teens swarmed the area of City Hall at Broad and Chestnut streets 4 p.m. Tuesday, police arrested and charged 23 people. The D.A.’s office charged 19 juveniles and four adults with felony rioting, disorderly conduct and harassment.
One of the juveniles was also charged with assault on police.
The four adults charged are 18-year-olds Miles Nibane, Zameer Waliyud-Din, Tasgene West, and 20-year-old Tyrone Joseph.
“This group of teens and young adults represented a real danger to the community,” District Attorney Seth Williams said. “I hope the seriousness of these charges sends a message that these reckless actions will not be tolerated in the city.”
Merchants in the area alerted police to the flash mob when dozens of teens were causing a disturbance. Witnesses saw the teens running west along Market Street, across Dilworth Plaza, and then into the underground SEPTA station.
Police increased patrols in the area of Market East after a group of almost 100 teens showed up on Market Street in February -- pushing down pedestrians, fighting on street corners and vandalizing Macy's Center City.
"We just can't tolerate this sort of stuff and we're not gonna tolerate it," Police Comm. Charles Ramsey said.
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The 19 juveniles will be held at different juvenile detention centers until their March 11 family court date. The four adults will appear in court March 9.