Philadelphia experienced a second consecutive night of widespread looting, with hooded individuals targeting beauty and liquor stores after a series of burglaries.
Amid a wave of looting in Philadelphia, beauty and liquor stores became the focal points of organized thefts, adding to the chaos that has gripped the city. Security footage captured the scenes as hooded individuals smashed their way into Nat’s Beauty Supply in Mayfair, making off with hair extensions and wigs. The store’s owner, Claudia Silmeas, lamented the loss, stating, “I don’t know what to think, I don’t know who to call. Everything is missing.”
In a separate incident, Fine Wine & Good Spirits on Adams Avenue faced a similar fate, with thieves shattering windows, emptying shelves, and even stealing a safe and a lottery machine. This spree of thefts occurred despite the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board’s decision to close all of its Philadelphia stores in response to prior burglaries.
Law enforcement has been grappling with the situation, making a total of 52 arrests as of Thursday morning. The suspects, ranging from 14 to 37 years old, face charges primarily related to burglary and theft. Six individuals have been charged with inciting a riot. Among those arrested was social media influencer Dayjia Blackwell, known as “Meatball,” who live-streamed the looting and was subsequently charged with multiple felonies and misdemeanors.
The looting incidents follow earlier protests against a judge’s decision not to charge a police officer in a fatal shooting case, but Interim Police Commissioner John Stanford emphasized that the looters are separate groups seeking to exploit the situation. Police are investigating the possibility of organized caravans moving from one location to another.
Despite the chaos, city officials remain resolute in their efforts to address the situation. Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney vowed that such destructive and illegal behavior would not be tolerated, and law enforcement will continue making arrests until all responsible individuals are brought to justice. Additionally, the city is working to assess areas that may require increased police presence and additional resources to restore order.
The rampant looting represents a challenge for Philadelphia authorities as they work to maintain public safety and protect local businesses in the face of organized theft.