(Editor’s note: Colin Flaherty has done more reporting than any other journalist on what appears to be a nationwide trend of skyrocketing black-on-white crime, violence and abuse. WND features these reports to counterbalance the virtual blackout by the rest of the media due to their concerns that reporting such incidents would be inflammatory or even racist. WND considers it racist not to report racial abuse solely because of the skin color of the perpetrators or victims.) Videos linked or embedded may contain foul language and violence.
Some were surprised to hear about the black mob violence on Valentine’s Day at Victoria’s Secret in Norfolk, Va.
Not at the violence: The Galleria at Military Circle has been the site of dozens of episodes of racial lawlessness over the last two years, most of which has gone unreported in the local newspaper.
The surprise is that this mall is still open. Most of its major tenants are gone or leaving – Sears, J.C. Penney’s, the nearby DoubleTree also closed. The big draw there now is a movie theater with cheap tickets.
More than 25 percent of the space is vacant. DeadMalls.com says the mall is a “zombie” that is really dead but just acts alive.
The latest example of black mob violence at the mall came on Valentine’s Day. A large group of people fought in the Victoria’s Secret store. One guy pulled out a gun and shot someone in the leg.
In urban lingo, shooting someone in the leg is called “leg warming.” It is often a warning about cooperating with police or selling drugs in someone’s else’s territory or even refusing to give someone a pit bull puppy.
“They were just walking in the mall, and the guys came up to him and wanted to fight DaQuan and his friend,” Towanna Stovall said. “They said, ‘No we got our kids with us.’ They basically said, ‘We don’t care whether you got your kids with you or not, we are going to do this.’ They hit my goddaughter and punched her in the eye. They also jumped on DaQuan and his friend.”
On Twitter, several people said the fight started over a pair of panties. Whatever the reason, black mob violence is a regular feature of life at this mall – and others in the area.
In December, the Military Circle mall and some surrounding businesses closed early after hundreds of black people rampaged through the shopping center fighting, destroying property, creating mayhem.
“Every weekend on Friday and Saturday nights a bunch of juveniles will just swarm the malls, no intentions other than being up to no good, shoplifting, running rampant, getting into fights and just generally driving out the other traffic that comes in the mall because they don’t want to be around that,” said one store manager who did not want to be identified.
The Norfolk Virginian-Pilot refuses to report that violence at the mall is predominantly among black shoppers. This is the same paper that took almost three weeks last year to report that two of its own newsroom employees were surrounded and beaten by a mob of 50 black people, the same paper that received six awards from National Association of Black Journalists at its annual Salute to Excellence.
The editor said he had no evidence that violence was “racially motivated.” And anyone who suggests that a pattern of black mob violence presents evidence of some kind of racial motivation is not welcome on the pages of the Virginian-Pilot:
“I have seen more posts removed for this reason on this thread than any I remember,” said one reader, even before the Valentine’s Day shootout. “Apparently the Pilot has a problem with posters who tell things as they truly are. I use to drive a mini-bus for a retirement community and many of our residents were scared to death at the mention of going to Military Circle, and it wasn’t because of the prices.”
Others piled on:
“Norfolk is quickly becoming the ‘Detroit’ of Hampton Roads.”
“We were greeted with teens running rampant throughout the mall and security doing absolutely nothing.”
“I would buy a loom and make my own clothes, rather than chance it shopping at Military Circle. Too many thugs, or people who look like thugs, roaming around. Just tear it down. I can’t think of anything you could put there to overcome this problem. Most people are afraid to shop at Military Circle. Most people are afraid to even get out of their cars.”
The mall is also the scene of frequent violence and theft in the parking lot and nearby bus stops. Police report 800 calls for service to the mall last year.
At Google and Yelp, reviewers warned newcomers to the area to stay away because it is not safe.
“Ghetto really is the word,” said one reviewer at Google+. “The shops are either closed, dilapidated or designed for low income people. My best advice for shopping is to leave Norfolk.”
And the comments on Twitter were so explicit about identifying the race of the people involved at the mall, WAVY-TV said it could not even repeat most of them. This is about the closest you can get: “It wouldn’t be Vday if someone didn’t get shot in Military Circle Mall.”
Angelia Williams represents the area on the Norfolk City Council. She blames the mall landlord for the violence: The owners “don’t know the area and are just in it for the dollars and cents.”
Some tenants also say the mall needs to do more special events. The day after the shooting, however, the mall did sponsor a major promotion to celebrate Black History Month. Last year, a store sponsored a “boy band” called Mindless Behavior. The autograph signing attracted several hundred black people.
One local mall that seems to have escaped some of the recent racial chaos is the MacArthur Mall in downtown Norfolk. In 2009, after a series of violence incidents with “unsupervised youth,” the mall banned anyone under the age of 18 from entering unless they were accompanied by someone 21 years or older.