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Police called to Dulles Town Center over shoe sale ‘melee’

Nike’s Air Jordan shoes went on sale at several stores in the Dulles Town Center mall, nearly inciting a riot, the Sheriff’s Office said.

The agency was called to the scene as nearly 250 people gathered near the mall’s entrance just after midnight on Dec. 23.

The low price of the shoes, coupled with a 3 a.m. opening time and limited stock contributed to the large, unruly crowd.

Mall security tried to keep the crowd from gathering, to no avail. When a few made their way into the mall, dozens began rushing in, but were herded back outside.

Mall staff called the Loudoun County’s Sheriff’s Office, but the responding deputies were easily overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of the crowd, which pushed the deputies against walls and glass doors, the agency said.

Dispatch sent additional deputies, and Virginia State Police responded as well. The larger force was able to control the crowd without further incident and the gathered police force assisted the stores with a lottery for the shoppers.

No arrests were made, although one woman suffered a leg injury during the original melee, the Sheriff’s Office said. She was treated and released at the scene. A wallet was also reported to be pick-pocketed.

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