Philadelphia targets youth flash mob attacks

Aug. 9, 2011 at 9:20 AM

PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 9 (UPI) -- Mayor Michael Nutter has warned youths they will face the full force of the city's criminal justice system if they assault anyone in Philadelphia.

Nutter issued the warning during an announcement of earlier curfews and increased police patrols designed to prevent attacks by groups of roving youths, the Philadelphia Daily News reported Tuesday.

"If you assault a fellow Philadelphian, a visitor or anyone else in this city, you are going to jail," Nutter said. "The full force of the Philadelphia justice system will come down on your shoulders, and unfortunately your life will be forever changed."

The announcement follows a spate of violent attacks in Center City, a business and club district in downtown Philadelphia.

In the most recent incident, a gang of minors punched, beat and robbed bystanders. One man was hospitalized with a fractured skull after being savagely kicked.

District Attorney Seth Williams said parents will be held responsible if their children violate curfew and commit acts of violence and the children could end up in prison.

"There will be no diversionary programs, no community service for people who commit random acts of violence," Williams said.

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