The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office has announced that one adult and nine juveniles have been charged following protests over the Trayvon Martin verdict in Los Angeles on July 13, and in Hollywood on July 16.
Shareef Abdullah, 28, of Los Angeles, has been charged with attempted grand theft, robbery and making criminal threats for allegedly attempting to steal television cameras belonging to two news crews covering demonstrations on July 13. Abdullah allegedly tried to steal a camera valued at $7,000 that belonged to Telemundo before being chased away. He returned later, grabbed the camera and ran. A cameraman chased him and successfully retrieved the camera.
Later the same night, Abdullah allegedly approached a CBS news crew and threatened to shoot a cameraman if he didn’t give him their camera. Abdullah allegedly fled with the equipment. He was arrested on July 16 by Los Angeles Police Department officers. Abdullah, who pleaded not guilty on July 18, returns to court July 30 for a preliminary hearing at the Foltz Criminal Justice Center. If convicted, he faces up to 15 years in state prison.
Nine juveniles were also charged with robbery for allegedly participating in a “flash mob” in Hollywood on July 16 in which tourists and shops were robbed. Three girls and two boys, all 16 years old; and four 15-year-old boys were charged with stealing cell phones, a wallet and skateboard. Police believe the rampage was sparked by messages on social media sites.
All nine juveniles, whose names are being withheld because of their ages, pleaded not guilty on July 19. Four were released to their parents. Five remain in custody. All of the defendants return to court in August.