Groups of people loot stores in Philadelphia; at least 15 arrested
Stores in Philadelphia’s Center City area and in other parts of the city were looted Tuesday after a crowd of juveniles and young people broke into stores, According to a report from the police. The incident occurred on a day of protests over a judge’s dismissal of charges against a police officer in the shooting death of Eddie Irizarry. However, the police clarified that the looting was not connected to the protest and the looters were not protesters.
Opportunistic Criminals Take Advantage of the Situation
Interim Police Commissioner John Stanford described the looters as “criminal opportunists” who took advantage of the situation to wreak havoc in the city. He emphasized that such behavior would not be tolerated.
Stores Ransacked in Center City and Beyond
Video footage captured individuals wearing hooded sweatshirts looting an Apple store and a nearby Foot Locker in Center City. However, the looting was not confined to the city center, as businesses in other areas were also targeted. Police suspect that social media played a role in coordinating the looting, with reports suggesting a “caravan” of vehicles may have traveled to different locations.
Judge Dismisses Charges, Prosecutors Vow to Refile
Judge Wendy Pew dismissed all criminal charges against Mark Dial, a Philadelphia police officer accused of wrongfully killing Eddie Irizarry. The ruling was met with protests earlier in the day, but the looting was not directly related to these demonstrations. Prosecutors have expressed their intent to refile the charges and plan to appeal the judge’s decision.
Philadelphia Managing Director Tumar Alexander condemned the looting, calling it disrespectful to the Irizarry family and their ongoing ordeal.
The exact number of stores affected by the looting is still unknown, but the police expect to have a clearer picture by Wednesday.