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January 02, 2021

Seven arrested for vandalizing federal buildings in Philadelphia on New Year's Eve

Police said Molotov cocktails and other suspicious devices were recovered

Investigations Vandalism
new-years-eve-vandals-explosives.original.original.png Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

Police said seven people were arrested after at least two federal buildings were vandalized on New Year's Eve.

Police arrested seven people after at least two federal buildings in Center City were vandalized and Molotov cocktails and other suspicious devices were recovered on New Year's Eve, police said. 

A group of 50 people dressed in all black were seen at around 8:30 p.m. Thursday night at the Robert Nix Federal building, 6ABC reported.

Police said a 25-year old man threw a brick at the windows of the building before fleeing with a 24-year-old man and two 23-year-old women. They were all arrested.

Several people in the group ran from the police, according to ABC. Police said they believed the group had more plans for the night. 

"During a search, they recovered Molotov cocktails and some other devices which have not been identified," Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Mike Cram said to reporters. Molotov cocktails are bottles filled with flammable liquids, such as gasoline, that are thrown into buildings to start fires.

Windows of a sheriff's van were broken and there was anti-police and anti-prison graffiti found on the walls of the Federal Detention Center in Center City, police said. Building damages were estimated at $3,000.

Another 25-year-old man who police said had a glass jar with a "strong flammable odor" and a container of white powder labeled "Fire Starter" was arrested, the Associated Press reported. A 22-year-old woman with bottles of liquid with a "chemical smell," and a 26-year-old woman were also arrested, police said.

Police said they are searching for more suspects.