Cops To Treat ‘Wilding’ Teens ‘Like NATO Protesters’ To Avoid Trouble

CHICAGO (CBS) — Police are preparing use a tactic first developed to handle roaming protests during the NATO Summit two years ago to deal with a growing number of groups of teenagers attempting to wreak havoc on downtown streets and along the lakefront as summer sets in.

Police Supt. Garry McCarthy said the department has a strategy in place to deal with so-called “wilding” incidents, which become all-too-common along Rush Street, Michigan Avenue, and at the city’s most popular beaches in the summer months.

“You all know what happens during the summer months on Michigan Avenue, and we have a strategy to prevent these mobs of kids from coming up and causing mayhem downtown,” the superintendent said at an unrelated news conference on Tuesday.

McCarthy said police responded to a handful of incidents already this past weekend.

“Over the weekend, we had at least five or six examples of large groups of kids coming off the CTA, that we escorted around basically like NATO protesters, which is the tactic that we used last year that was so effective,” McCarthy said.

Police formed cordon lines around the groups of teens and followed them around to prevent them from causing trouble.

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