Hartford police identify ring leader in flash mob robbery - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Hartford police identify ring leader in flash mob robbery

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(Hartford police photo) (Hartford police photo)
HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -

Hartford police said they cited a young person who acted as the leader of a flash mob group that damaged a convenience store.

The unidentified teen was charged with inciting a riot, breach of peace and larceny.

Police said they also made nine other juvenile citations in connection with the case, which happened last month. So far, one adult has been charged. Travon Shirly, 21, was arrested shortly after the incident, which happened on Nov. 28.

Deputy Chief Brian Foley of Hartford police said he expected there to be more. 

A group of about 40 young teens stormed a Shell station on Capitol Avenue around 10 p.m., caused damage and left with snacks. The incident left $4,000 worth of damage, according to police.

"Everybody needs justice. I need justice," clerk Comla Agah said. 

Foley said more than 25 young people have been identified over the course of the investigation. Foley said the surveillance video obtained by police did go viral.

Schools cooperated in identifying many of the teen suspects who attend high schools in Hartford and beyond.

"The identification really came to us and it mushroomed, obviously, but it's pretty darn good video evidence," Foley said. 

At the end of November, police said a number of parents brought their children forward after hearing about what happened. CT Fastrak also participated in the investigation as some of the children took a bus and were heard bragging about the incident.

Police have talked with the teens and they said this bad idea started at a party.

"Some of the kids left the party," Foley said. "And they thought it would be a good idea to go in and do that and discussed it and a large number of kids did do it."

Agah said the incident left him shaken. Agah said he's always looking behind his shoulder and worried of a repeat offense. 

"I don't know if they're going to come again or if someone else will come again," Agah said. "I'm scared."

Police said they won't stop with these 27 suspects and not all will be charged. Even if they are, police said they won't be tried as adults and will most likely need to do community service. 

Police continue to urge the public to report anything known about the crime. They can be reached at 860-757-4000 or by submitting an online tip here.

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