Black youth kick in storefront windows during the rebellion that struck Birmingham, England on August 8, 2011. The nationwide uprising was sparked by the economic crisis and police brutality., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Scores arrested in Birmingham riots
August 9, 2011 - 11:19AM
Sydney Morning Herald, Australia
Police in Birmingham have arrested about 100 people after rioters and looters rampaged across the city centre, mirroring the chaotic scenes in London.
Hundreds of youths gathered in the central English city's main retail area, which closed its doors early on Monday night in anticipation of violence.
West Midlands Police said the arrests, for offences including violent disorder and aggravated burglary, came after shops were damaged and property stolen in the city centre and some surrounding areas.
Assistant Chief Constable Sharon Rowe said many of those arrested were young people and urged parents to make sure they knew where their children were.
Scores of shop windows and doors - including sportswear and mobile phone stores - were smashed by gangs as frightened shoppers and city workers looked on.
Some bystanders sobbed as rioters, their faces covered with hats, scarves and hoods, attacked jewellery and computer stores on the city's High Street.
Shops and fast food outlets appeared to bear the brunt of the violence.
"A significant number of the arrests have been young people, so I would urge parents to get in touch with their children and get them home to ensure they are safe," Rowe said.
West Midlands Ambulance Service said that by 11pm on Monday it had received calls about 24 incidents in the city centre, mostly relating to "assaults of one sort or another".
A spokesman said a total of 34 patients had been seen by crews and 11 people had been taken to hospital.
The disorder was witnessed by members of the English cricket team in their Birmingham city centre hotel.
The squad is staying in the city ahead of the third Test against India which starts on Wednesday.
England bowler Tim Bresnan said on his Twitter account: "Just seen the rioters in Birmingham fleeing down the main street followed by a load of police in the full get up. What's going on?"
All-rounder Stuart Broad added on Twitter: "Police vans all around Birmingham where we are right now."
Paul Tilsley, deputy leader of Birmingham City Council, said: "We are appealing to people within the city to remain calm and allow the police and others to do their job in bringing these incidents under control.
"To help achieve this it is important that as many people as possible leave the streets. We urge all parents within the city to get in touch with any children or young people not currently at home asking them to return."