LA Lakers Riot at Staples Center After Lakers Win 15th NBA Title
The celebration in Los Angeles after the LA Lakers victory in the NBA playoffs turned into a riot last night after the LA Lakers won their final play-off game on June 14th in Orlando.
The celebration, which drew thousands, began peacefully, according to the LAPD, who were out in full force on the streets of LA; however, what is now being called a "Lakers riot" began at about 9:30pm according to Twitter users, who warned people to stay away from the Staples Center.
The victory party at the Staples Center began to get crazy, as people who had been at the LA Lakers game started partying on the streets. It is doubtful the intent of the happy fans was to have another Los Angeles riot, but the revelry quickly grew out of hand.
Shortly after the Lakers won, some fans began taking apart the trees outside the Staples Center to use as kindling for a fire in the middle of the street. The LAPD was able to quell the fire, but, soon after, things started spiraling out of control.
Some Lakares fans walked out on the 110 Freeway and threw fireworks at police. Eyewitnesses also say that bottles and rocks were thrown at the LAPD. The Lakers riot fully erupted when rioters began attacking taxis and other cars.
The LAPD declared the Los Angeles riot, which injured 8 police officers, an unlawful assembly. The Lakers incident is now under investigation.
Los Angeles police say eight officers have suffered minor injuries during downtown disturbances that erupted amid street celebrations of the Lakers' NBA championship victory over the Orlando Magic.
What began as a lively but peaceful celebration took on a different tone for those remaining a few hours after the game. Some in the crowd vandalized a shoe store, buses and police cars, set small fires and threw rocks and bottles at police.
Police say 18 people were arrested for disturbing the peace, arson and other infractions. Three of those arrested were juveniles.