ONLY ON SHEEPSHEAD BITES: Chaos overtook Kings Plaza Mall (5100 Kings Plaza) yesterday afternoon when approximately 500 teenagers became rowdy, causing security officials to call the police and temporarily shutter the mall for at least two hours to restore order.
The teens, who were off from school for winter break, flooded the mall, and security officials there became concerned for patrons’ safety when the kids became boisterous around 5:30 p.m., according to Kings Plaza’s head of security.
“They were just rowdy, they weren’t doing much,” the mall’s security chief told Sheepshead Bites this morning. “We called the police department and the police department escorted them in and out.”
The NYPD has not returned calls for comment about the incident, but the 63rd Precinct’s community affairs unit sent out the following e-mail, obtained by Sheepshead Bites, to community leaders this morning:
I received several phone calls last night regarding Kings Plaza…so I want to dispel any rumors you may or may not have heard. We had a group of rambunctious teens acting like children in the mall last night. We already had officers in the Mall at the time. We took steps to ensure the safety of everyone in the mall and expelled the kids from the mall. There were no reports of any injuries, larcenies, or property damaged. Therefore there were no arrests made.
While rumors abounded on social media that a riot and gang disputes had caused the mall to close, mall security confirmed that there was no damage or theft during the incident, and no one including personnel was injured. Video of altercations with police and mall security found their way to Facebook and Twitter late in the day, including the video below showing teens clashing with what appears to be police officers from the 63rd Precinct.
Security officials also said the mall was never officially closed, although they did temporarily restrict access until the kids were ejected, and order was restored at approximately 8:00 p.m. – about an hour and a half before its usual closing time. Mall security said some businesses chose to stay closed the remainder of the day.
“Some of them kept their gate down and had their registers closed. We didn’t close. The mall was in business,” the security boss said.