French police arrest more than 100 people at ‘Purge’ Halloween riots

French police arrest more than 100 people after ‘Purge’ Halloween riots inspired by horror film saw gangs of masked youths storm Paris and Lyon

  • Police attacked, stores looted and bins burned in Purge riots in Paris and Lyon 
  • Violence broke out after man, 19, called for uprising against cops on Snapchat
  • ‘Joke’ was taken seriously, leading to 100 people being arrested on Halloween
  • Riot was inspired by Purge film, in which all crime becomes legal for one night

French police arrested more than 100 people in Paris and Lyon on Halloween night during a Purge-style rampage.

Officers were attacked with acid, a sports store was looted, bins were set ablaze and fireworks let off in a night of violence sparked by a Snapchat post.

In the video the man, a 19-year-old from Grenoble, called for a ‘Purge’ against police on Halloween, inspired by the American film where all crimes are legal for a night.

Police were attacked with acid and fireworks in a night of Purge-inspired violence across France that ended with more than 100 people being arrested (pictured, rioters in Lyon)

He claims the call-to-arms was supposed to be a joke, but within hours of being posted on Saturday it was shared thousands of times.

Posters spoke about attacking police, burning cars and fighting in the streets. 

The original poster, who has not been identified, handed himself over to on Monday and will now face court on a charge of ‘public provocation of willful attack on the life and physical integrity of people’ on November 28. 

Extra police were deployed on the streets of Grenoble, Paris, Genève and other locations on Wednesday night in anticipation of trouble.

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While the crime-spree was not as severe as first thought, officers were unable to completely prevent trouble.

In Lyon, police fired teargas at hundreds of youths who barged through the city centre, hassling police and passers by, shattering shop windows and setting rubbish bins on fire.

In the deprived Seine-Saint-Denis area north of Paris, a sportswear store was looted and young people robbing a grocery store attacked police with acid, according to Denis Jacob of police union Alternative Police. 

The riot started after a 19-year-old recorded a Snapchat video calling for an uprising against police which he claims was a ‘joke’ but quickly went viral 

Extra police were deployed to deal with the anticipated trouble, while the instigator handed himself in to police and will now face court later this month

‘Halloween must remain a celebration, The Purge is not a joke, The Purge is a threat,’ Interior Minister Christophe Castaner told reporters on Thursday. 

Castaner said 15,000 police were deployed all across France on Wednesday night in anticipation, and that violence was less severe than a year ago.

In 2017, there were 25 incidents of violence recorded and 15 vehicles ended up burned out in Toulouse, L’Express reported. 

Meanwhile in Nice, there were forty reports of arson.

A police source told L’Express that, over the last four or five years, Halloween has required an increased police presence to keep orders on the streets. 

Youths in depressed suburbs of French cities have been torching hundreds of vehicles on New Year’s Eve and Bastille Day since the early 1990s.

Halloween is not traditionally celebrated in France, although it has become more visible since the late 1990s under the influence of American films and TV series, with shop windows often showing hollowed out pumpkin heads and witches.

Video taken in Borny, a suburb of Metz, showed a gang of people smashing some glass at a tram stop before trying to board the train

When the train fails to stop the youths begin throwing fireworks at it, causing the driver to pull through a set of red lights in an attempt to escape

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