Come all to the Lauderhill Mall brawl.
According to the Miami Herald, more than 200 teenagers responded to an invitation through social media to a fight at the Lauderhill Mall in Lauderhill, Fla. on Tuesday. According to Christian Science Monitor, only 15 actually fought.
Huffington Post reported the small fight beginning at 3:30 p.m. ET. No severe injuries, but a 16 year-old male whose forehead was cut was taken to a local hospital as a precaution. No weapons were used, although a witness said people were hit by traffic cones, and no arrests were made.
Lauderhill Police lieutenant Michael Butkus was dumbfounded. He said, “I don’t know what the motive was for using the mall or why they would want to fight.”
According to the Huffington Post police said speculation as to the cause of the fight included a debate on the Trayvon Martin, a previous fight between two girls, and an invitation spreading through social media for people to settle their “personal beef”.
The fight caused local police to do a partial lockdown of the mall. According to NBC 6 South Florida, a SWAT team was called in to help break up the crowd. Two officers remained at the mall to prevent an encore performance.
According to Christian Science Monitor, this seems to be part of a trend called “flash mob”. A flash mob is defined by Dictionary.com as “a group of people mobilized by social media to meet in a public place for the purpose of doing an unusual or entertaining activity of short duration”. Recently, flash mobs have grown violent.
The Christian Science Monitor reported that flash mob incidents have also occurred in Chicago, Baton Rouge, La., Philadelphia, and New York. In the Chicago incident, the teenagers rioted, and harassed people on Michigan Avenue. Nineteen people were arrested in the incident.
However, the Lauderhill Mall brawl was a little more controlled. No criminal charges are expected to be filed.
John Bean just completed his junior at the University of Missouri, and expects to graduate in May 2014. John is a journalism major, and is also working on a business minor. He grew up near Chicago, and hopes to become a sportswriter someday. To answer everyone’s question, he prefers the White Sox over the Cubs. John is currently an intern for TheUrbanTwist.com.