Fans of the Los Angeles Lakers clashed with police after the team’s NBA win on Sunday night.
The Lakers claimed the NBA title after a long drought that saw the team’s worst losing streak in franchise history.
Celebrations took a violent turn as Lakers fans filled the streets outside of the Staples centre, looting stores and vandalising cars. Some riotous fans set upon police responding to the scene. LAPD officers deployed ordinances to disperse rioters.
Footage captured by Rise Images and independent journalist Tomas Morales showed rioters attacking LAPD officers with bottles, fireworks, and other projectiles.
Footage on local media captured scenes of violence as the mob set upon a police squad car, kicking it as it backed off. ABC7 reports that during the chaos, a man’s hand was brutally injured by fireworks.
“Authorities tell us a man’s hands are badly injured from fireworks. Unclear if he was lighting them off or just got hit,” reported the station.
Footage shared by Rise Images showed rioters jumping on top of a vandalized Metro bus covered in graffiti. Some rioters started a fire inside while others smashed out its windows.
Other footage captured by independent journalists showed several sports cars doing tire burnouts while others did “donuts” in the street.
Before the game, public officials asked fans to stay indoors and remain socially distanced due to the coronavirus pandemic.
"As we cheer our @Lakers' 17th championship, please remember it's still not safe to gather in groups," tweeted Mayor Eric Garcetti. “Let’s honor our city’s triumph by protecting others and making sure we don’t spread the virus. Please celebrate safely at home. Do not gather at Staples Center. Thank you!”