Village working on solution for disruptive teenagers at businesses


FORSYTH, Ill. (WICA) — A group of teenagers is causing problems for businesses. People who work in the mall say the teenagers are doing things like stealing, vandalizing cars and pulling fire alarms. Now deputies are stepping in to try and stop it.

People we talked to say the kids usually start gathering at Hickory Point Mall. They’re now asked to leave the mall three hours before closing because of it. However, after they leave, mall employees say they often head to nearby businesses like McDonald’s or Red Lobster.

Village Mayor Marilyn Johnson says two cars were damaged in Red Lobster’s parking lot earlier this month, and she believes it was this group of kids that did it. We talked to one woman who works at the mall who is frustrated by the problem. She feels there should be more to entertain kids at night to keep them out of trouble.

“They’re running; they’re screaming, screaming expletives, trying to fight. It’s usually a big group of them. The security does the best that they can, but usually they have to be ran out. They have a policy over there where they kick them out by 6 p.m., but even then they still keep coming and coming,” said Christopher & Banks employee Share Hammer.

Village Administrator Davis Strohl said village leaders met with the Macon County Sheriff’s Office and the businesses affected to discuss the issue. There are now two extra officers patroling on Friday’s and Saturday’s in Forsyth near the mall area on top of the regular two.

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