KCMO City Hall
1:24 am
Thu April 15, 2010

Council Committee Contemplates Plaza Melee

Kansas City, Mo. – A clearer picture of Saturday night's "flash mob" conflicts on the Plaza emerged in a city council committee meeting Wednesday. But it was also a meeting with conflicts of its own.

Most of the 900 or so young people police dispersed from the upscale shopping area were 16 or under. Many arrived by bus. Only a few, mostly among the older youths, were involved in fights.

Some adults did complain that police used pepper spray on some kids who weren't misbehaving, according to Councilman John Sharp. Which led to a polite but chilly confrontation between him and Chief of Police Jim Corwin.

Sharp said a big part of the problem is kids with no place to go: "There's really no place in town that African-American kids can go and feel welcome."

Councilwoman Cindy Circo is working with others on a master plan for the city's youth

Melba Curls noted that it needs input from the kids themselves.