The mayhem broke out Saturday just after the Towson Town Center closed. In cell phone video taken by a witness an officer is seen tackling a teen. Baltimore County police say the situation escalated quickly, and the rowdy crowd of hundreds started throwing rocks at officers.
"This was an unusually large crowd, and it was an unusually unruly crowd," said Baltimore County Police spokesperson, Elise Armacost.
No officers were seriously hurt. One 16-year-old girl was arrested for resisting arrest and assaulting a cop.
Local lawmakers are now pushing for more control when the mall closes, saying the management company needs to take action.
In a statement, County Executive Kevin Kamenetz says in part, "the Towson Town Center management has an obligation to address the issue of large numbers of unsupervised teens leaving the mall at closing time."
Other local leaders agree, including Councilman David Marks.
"The mall needs to look at best practices,” he said. “Clearly there are other shopping areas that have had this problem, and the mall needs to say 'should we be requiring youth under a certain age to have escorts by parents or guardians?'"
He wants to enforce a youth escort policy where teens would need to be with a parent or guardian after a certain time. Other shopping centers in our area have had success with this. Marks says it would control crowds and give people in the area peace of mind.
"People should feel safe when they patronize a business or when working in a business, and when they leave the mall they should feel comfortable leaving that environment," Marks said.
We reached out to the management company at the Towson Town Center, but have not heard back.