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Young people rampage in Hollywood

LOS ANGELES — Packs of young people rampaged through Hollywood, knocked people down, and stole cellphones and other items before a police sweep halted the marauding and arrested a dozen people, police said Wednesday.

Calls began coming in at around 8:30 p.m. Tuesday that youths — possibly organized through social media — were robbing people and stealing T-shirts and other goods from businesses, mainly on Hollywood Boulevard, Lieutenant Ray Valois said.

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Fifteen to 20 young men and women were ‘‘attacking victims and taking property,’’ he said.

No serious injuries were reported.

As many as 40 people may have been involved, splitting into smaller groups and reforming as they looted people nearby, Valois said.

Surveillance video aired on television showed youths roaming along the famed Hollywood Walk of Fame.

The Police Department had redeployed numerous officers to the city’s Crenshaw District after violence broke out the previous night during protests of the George Zimmerman acquittal in Florida.

Commander Andrew Smith said it was believed the youths took advantage of that ‘‘and decided that this would be a good night to come up to Hollywood and act a little crazy.’’

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