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NYPD Floods Times Square as Easter Gang Wilding Feared

By Murray Weiss | March 29, 2013 11:12am | Updated on March 31, 2013 6:54pm
 Barricades lie in Times Square after the Easter Sunday "wilding" in 2010.
Barricades lie in Times Square after the Easter Sunday "wilding" in 2010.
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DNAinfo/Alexandra Cheney

NEW YORK — The NYPD is flooding Times Square and Midtown with extra cops Sunday evening to prevent any violence that's historically followed the Javits Center's car show, DNAinfo.com New York has learned.

In recent years, marauding teens took to the streets following the show in what the mayor called a gang "wilding" that's seen dozens of arrests.

In 2010, more than 50 people were arrested as youths stormed businesses, harassed throngs of pedestrians and shot four people in separate acts of violence.

“The top item on our plate this weekend is the car show,” a high-ranking cop told “On The Inside.” 

“There will be hundreds of extra officers on duty, particularly from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. when the car show lets out.”

“We are not going to have any repeat of the past,” he added.

The Easter Day car show has become an unofficial “Gang Initiation Day” among the city’s crews, which challenge new recruits to gather and create mayhem to earn their way into the respective loose-knit groups. 

The youths, often sporting their gang colors, have historically gathered at the auto show before heading off in packs to Times Square. Using Twitter and other social media, the teens tell each other where to meet following the event.

And sources say even executives involved in the show avoid the Midtown area. Many are forsaking the neighborhood altogether, staying at hotels in Downtown Brooklyn rather than near the Javits or Times Square.