ORLANDO, Fla. — More than 100 sheriff’s deputies in riot gear broke up an out-of-control crowd waiting outside a mall to buy a limited edition Nike basketball shoe.
Authorities say there were no injuries or arrests outside the Florida Mall late Thursday. The crowd began getting unruly as hundreds packed the parking lot, waiting to buy the $220, limited-edition shoe that was timed to be released during the NBA All-Star Game in Orlando.
Police also arrested one person in a crowd in Maryland waiting for the shoe’s release. The disturbances follow a series of outbursts across the country in December as impatient shoppers lined up for another new basketball shoe from Nike Inc.
The Orlando Sentinel reported the crowd was asked to wait across the street when the mall closed. But one person ran toward Foot Locker and others followed. Authorities formed a line and used shields to push back the crowd.
“I saw hundreds of people running toward me. I thought I was going to get trampled,” Amanda Charles, 20, told the newspaper. Charles who was among a group of a half-dozen friends who drove more than two hours from Jacksonville to try to buy the glow-in-the-dark Nikes.
At a mall in Hyattsville, Md., police said today they arrested one person for disorderly conduct as a crowd of more than 100 awaited the shoe’s release.