Flash mob measure passes IL Senate

Apr 24, 2013

Anyone convicted of using social media to plan or incite a mob attack could face tougher punishment under legislation approved by the Illinois Senate.

Lawmakers say the bill, approved 52-to-zero, is in response to recent incidents in Chicago. Groups of young people have descended on Michigan Avenue and other locations to attack or rob victims.  Senator Kwame Raoul, a Chicago Democrat, represents North Michigan Avenue ... but he says flash mobs also been happening in less famous parts of the city.

 "Blocks away from my home, there was an incident where a young lady was shot as a result of the use of social media to convene gang members to perpetrate this crime. So it's not just with regards to occurences on the Magnificant Mile."

 Senator Kirk Dillard, a Hinsdale Republican, says the incidents could hurt business and that the legislation "sends a message." The bill would allow a judge to impose an extended sentence if someone used electronic communication in a mob action. It now moves to the Illinois House.