Rush To Snag New Air Jordans Leads To Maced Shoppers

In a scene similar to some of the bloodthirsty throngs at post-Thanksgiving doorbuster sales, shoppers at a Texas mall grew impatient with waiting for Nike’s new Air Jordan 11 Retro sneakers to go on sale. And thanks to some rotten apples, many in the crowd ended up with mace in the face.

The coveted kicks were to go on sale at 6 a.m. Thursday morning and some customers had been in line since the night before.

According to some in line for the shoes, the situation went south when folks at the back of the line decided they wanted to improve their position… by less-than-civil means.

“At 4:30 the people at the back of line decided to bum rush and run to the doors,” one shopper tells a local news station. “As much as we tried to tell people to move, they wouldn’t. So [police] started macing.”

Says her sister, who had also been waiting patiently for the early morning opening, “I got pushed in a corner and we all got maced. And if it wasn’t for my sister covering my face, I think my face would have ended up worse… our noses are burning.”

The two say the situation could probably had been avoided if the store had handed out numbers instead of just letting people form a line, “So that this doesn’t happen. And this store, they just let everyone bum rush and act like crazy animals. And then everybody has to pay.”

Even with the melee, the $175 sneakers still managed to sell out in around 30 minutes.

Given the high price tag and the measures to which people are willing to go to acquire Air Jordans, it’s no wonder that the sneaks made this year’s list of most counterfeited gifts.

Towne East Mall Shoppers Maced at Chaotic Air Jordan Sneaker Sale []

Thanks to Howard for the tip!


Edit Your Comment

  1. MaliBoo Radley says:

    The only way I can read this headline is that Rush is doing something with Air Jordans. Damn, they’re a great band. They can have all the Air Jordans they want. Neil Peart can have extra, as I think he’s both brilliant and handsome.

  2. snowtires says:

    If you care that much about a pair of sneakers, you should definitely expect to get maced from time to time.

  3. MooflesThaCat says:

    Look at the key demographic for these shoes… it was inevitable.

  4. stock2mal says:

    The puzzle is : People who annoy you.

  5. HalOfBorg says:

    If they had given out numbers, people would get attacked for better numbers.

  6. AllanG54 says:

    I have never gotten so excited over something that I had to have it the day it came out, although I did wait on line with my wife so she could pick up for her son one of the new Harry Potter books when it came out at midnight. In any event, people who wait on line for an article of clothing that’s going to get dirty as soon as they step outside because they need to prove something to someone (whatever that may be) deserve what they get.

    • haggis for the soul says:

      I purposely make myself wait a day for stuff like this. I never want to be the person who would trample someone to buy something I don’t really need.

  7. Jimmy60 says:

    When did shopping become an adversarial process?

    • Fred Garvin says:

      1980’s. Cabbage Patch Kids. And for the poster who said they wouldn’t expect a bunch of church ladies to bum rush the line…it happened.

  8. Straspey says:

    Only once in my life – when I was sixteen years old – was there something so important to me that I was willing to stand on line overnight for the chance to buy them.

    And they were…

    Tickets to the Metropolitan Opera. (Wagner, of course)

    Merry Christmas to All !!

    • sasquatch28 says:

      Who goes to the opera at 16. Man if people at school found out I got tickets to the opera I would have gotten my ass kicked.

      • Straspey says:

        Sorry to hear that.

        I went to the opera with a few other friends of mine from high school at the time.

        The next day, when I didn’t have my homework done for one of my classes, the teacher barked at me, “So – where were YOU last night mister?”, and I looked her straight in the eye and said, “I went to see ‘Die Walkure’ at the Metropolitan Opera last night and didn’t get home until after midnight.”

        The entire room fell silent – then the teacher just muttered something like, “Hand it in tomorrow”, and afterwards my classmates thought it was the coolest thing they had ever seen.

        I guess it depends where you grew up and what type of school you attended.

  9. HoJu says:

    “The two say the situation could probably had been avoided if the store had handed out numbers instead of just letting people form a line,”


  10. brarian says:

    Yes, it’s because of all the black people. Never mind the guy who got trampled by all the colors of the rainbow during a Black Friday consumer frenzy at Target.

    • PupJet says:

      The hell with it being just black people, how about just stupid people regardless. I see some mexican, I THINK I saw an asian, and of course a few white people in there too. The most I see is the age demographics.

      But seriously, sneakers/shoes? I don’t even pay $50 for a pair of shoes and they last longer than those things probably will. Hell those things will probably melt in the rain.

    • Awesome McAwesomeness says:

      I live in the Metroplex where this mall is and frequented the mall as a child since it was the closest to the town I lived in. This has nothing to do with blacks (even if the majority were black.) It has to do with the class of people in the area. This mall is in a very trashy area of town and attracts very low class people of all colors. The malls in the nicer parts of town did not have this problem even though blacks were still at those malls buying the shoes. This was all about class and not race.

  11. luftmenschPhil says:

    These types of store promotions should be banned. They make our nation’s IQ look very, very low.

    • ryder02191 says:

      You’re neglecting the fact that our nation’s average IQ is actually very low. Twenty third overall, and among the absolute lowest across developed countries.

    • Griking says:

      You’re right. It clearly isn’t the animals faults, it’s the stores. New products shouldn’t be released any more and stores should be prohibited from having sales.

  12. mopman64 says:

    Just think what they would have done for some chicken and a sweet potato pie.

  13. the_wandering_monster says:

    [Something witty about Jennifer Government goes here]

  14. Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

    $175 for a pair of sneakers. And looking at the crowd, it doesn’t look like too many of them have high paying jobs. Or any jobs.

    What the hell is wrong with them that “things” have become so important.

    And, yes, they have nobody to blame but themselves and their own greed for getting maced.

    • MrEvil says:

      The sad part is, they aren’t even a quality shoe. I’ve paid $175 for shoes before, but they were high quality work shoes that could outlast me. Nikes are over-priced garbage shoes that won’t last a year. You’re paying for their billion dollar marketing campaigns rather than a quality product.

      • sonneillon says:

        I dunno where I work you can trash a high quality work shoe in a year or so. Redwings lasted one of the foreman’s about 6 weeks before they got a whole eaten into them.

    • Doubts42 says:

      This mall is one of the most ghetto in the DFW area and is the closest mall to many of the worst areas of Dallas.

  15. BorkBorkBork says:

    I’m not saying this to be racist (this goes for every psycho-shopper out there), but if you act like animals, expect to be treated like animals.

  16. jimmyhl says:

    Retailers and mall associations really need to re-think this type of promotion. The big push will come from insurers. It won’t take long for insurers to lay it out in stark terms for their policy holders who are in retail: cut this stuff out or we’ll cancel coverage, increase liability premiums and/or impose terms requiring substantial (and financially prohibitive) security arrangements for policy holders who insist on orchestrating these free-for-alls. Any one injured in this melee has a legit negligence lawsuit against the store and some are bound to file suit. I don’t blame them. A store can’t create conditions that are now known to result in injury to customers without also having a legal duty to protect its customers.

    • Doubts42 says:

      While the store could take precautions. the ultimate responsibility lies with those that choose to put their desires for cheap flashy merchandise before the safety and well being of themselves and others.

  17. dougp26364 says:

    This is just one more reason I avoid situations like black friday and boxing day. People are just nuts. Stand in line overnight, get the bums rush and get maced all for the chance to pay $175 for a pair of sneakers that will wear out in 6 months and be on the discount sale rack in a year. Stupid is as stupid does.

  18. zombie70433 says:

    Meanwhile, I recently strolled into wal-mart & bought a comfy pair of shoes without getting maced.

  19. Travangelist says:

    I like to look at things like this as though I were a future anthropologist: “a significant portion of the population was involved in a ‘sneaker cult’, often fighting one another to acquire objects of status.”

  20. ferris209 says:

    BTW, it was Pepper Spray, not mace. Very different substance, but burns just the same. Mace has been off the market for at least 15 years.

  21. LanMan04 says:

    Jive Lady: Oh stewardess! I speak jive.
    Randy: Oh, good.
    Jive Lady: He said that he’s in great pain and he wants to know if you can help him.

  22. TasteyCat says:

    I thought I just took a time machine back to 1991. Apparently, they still make Air Jordans, though.

  23. gman863 says:

    Nike set the rules: This model will be sold one day and one day only. No rainchecks, no reorders. The retailers had a corporate gun held to their heads.

    Air Jordans are not athletic shoes, they’re “bling-bling” specifically targeted to young hip-hop wannabes who thrive on attitude – similar to the marketing of malt liquor and menthol cigarettes on ghetto billboards.

    Two malls in Houston (yes, both in lower income areas) had major issues with doors being broken out, one mall had to be evacuated (all shoppers, all employees) because police feared the mob mentality would sipll over and result in mass injury or death.

    Call it what it is: Nike incited a race riot.

  24. Awesome McAwesomeness says:

    The mall this happened at was one of the most low class/trashy malls in the area. It isn’t a surprise that these knuckle draggers behaved the way they did. Anyone who would behave this way over shoes is a moron. What Consumerist didn’t mention is that a child got smashed up into a glass door and was trapped, and when someone cracked the door a bit to try to help the child, people bum rushed and this is why the macing happened. Seriously, what kind of people harm a small child over shoes? Ugh.

    The shoes were sold without incident at one of the nicer malls in the area. This mall does not allow camping out or waiting in the parking lot. The stores opened at 8:00 and there were zero problems.

  25. cromartie says:

    It’s always entertaining reading comments about bigots who confuse issues of race with an economic class issue.

    That said, the quoted shopper was right. Adequate security and a number/wristband system that is and has been commonly used for concert tickets and consumer electronics since, oh, the 1980s would prevent situations like this. It’s not rocket science, it’s standard retail practice.

  26. dush says:

    The guy doesn’t even play basketball anymore…

  27. retailriter says:

    Oh, those poor, needy people just trying to get shoes to cover their children’s feet…

  28. retailriter says:

    And what did it cost the Chinese to make these shoes, about $5?

  29. WhyUs? says:

    Texas is weathering the recession better than the rest of the country. Their unemployment rate stands at 8.2%; lower than the national avg. of 9.8%; but not as good as N. Dakota’s rate of 3.8%.

    That said, I still don’t see how it’s possible that so many people are willing to pay $175 for a pair of sneakers. And not only willing, but to actually come to blows to get them.

    Do banks accept these Air Jordans in lieu of a mortgage payment? Will supermarkets give you a year’s worth of groceries for these “magical” shoes? Does wearing them to a job interview ensure that you will get that job offer? If these shoes can actually do any of these, then yeah, I’ll get on that line to purchase those shoes.

    But until then, as someone who’s been unemployed and looking for a full-time job for over a year, I’m just as happy to be wearing my $5 pair of joggers from Wal-Mart that I picked up from the clearance rack eight months ago.

    Come on America! Snap out of it! Sure we can blame the banks, we can blame the government, and we can blame the Wall St. a-holes; but if we’re still doing stuff like this in these times? Then who do we blame?

  30. neverreallyshocked says:

    Michael may think they are too ignorant to own his shoes.