YouTube star Jake Paul was spotted during the looting at Fashion Square in Scottsdale, Arizona last night. However, Paul claims he was there to document, not steal tennis shoes and other items. He posted videos on his Instagram story from earlier in the day, which showed him protesting as police officers threw tear gas toward him. Paul captioned the video with, “America is in ruins” and “what can we do.” He later posted a selfie stating, “I’m tear gassed my eyes bleeding.” The YouTuber wrote a long explanation of why he was in the middle of the looting.
Jake Paul was later spotted on social media at Fashion Square in Scottsdale as looters destroyed a P.F. Chang’s. He posed for pictures with some fans and was seen walking around the ruined mall. While the YouTuber is not seen on camera participating in the looting, he was accused of it by many on social media. He had this to say in response.
“To be absolutely clear, neither I nor anyone in our group was engaged in any looting or vandalism. For context, we spent the day doing our part to peaceful protest one of the most horrific injustices our country has ever seen, which led to us being tear-gassed for filming the events and brutality that were unfolding in Arizona. We were gassed and forced to keep moving on foot. We filmed everything we saw in an effort to share our experience and bring more attention to the anger felt in every neighborhood we traveled through; we were strictly documenting, not engaging.”
“I do not condone violence, looting, or breaking the law; however, I understand the anger and frustration that led to the destruction we witnessed and while it’s not the answer, it’s important that people see it and collectively figure out how to move forward in a healthy way. We are all doing the best we can to be helpful and raise awareness; this is not the time to attack each other, it’s time to join together and evolve.”
While Jake Paul wasn’t a part of the looting, his fans, along with others on social media, called him out for being there in the first place. As Paul walks around, people are bashing in store windows and stealing everything that’s not nailed down to the ground. “Jake Paul has a 19 million dollar net worth and a giant platform consisting of mainly kids, and he’s out here looting whilst others get teargassed and beat?” one Twitter user wrote, with another piling on, “Jake Paul + his other rich white friends are capitalizing off of this for attention.” There is no evidence to suggest Paul was looting, but his name was trending on social media, so people made assumptions.
AT&T, Crate & Barrel, Neiman Marcus, and the Apple Store are some of the other businesses that were destroyed and looted last night at Fashion Square in Scottsdale, Arizona. Damages have yet to be estimated, but it’s more than likely going to be in the millions of dollars. Perhaps Jake Paul will donate to the mall in order to get it back up and running. You can check out Jake Paul’s Twitter apology below.
— Jake Paul (@jakepaul) May 31, 2020
YouTube star Jake Paul and his friends were caught “looting” and trashing property in a Scottsdale mall last night amid protests pic.twitter.com/KyrE87TvA9
— Taylor Lorenz (@TaylorLorenz) May 31, 2020
jake paul has a 19 million dollar net worth and a giant platform consisting of mainly kids, and he’s out here looting whilst others get teargassed and beat? fuck off he really isn’t shit
— dani BLM (@LOVERSHSLOT) May 31, 2020
hijacking the black lives matter movement as a famous internet celebrity to rob a mall is exactly what i thought jake paul would be doing today. https://t.co/PrrbN3njKz
— ImAllexx (@ImAllexx) May 31, 2020
Damn not evan LOGAN would be that dumb
— not eligible for draft (@TrainerLuke1621) May 31, 2020
— Emma (@originalemmz) May 31, 2020
Literal black people are getting arrested for looting during these protests but jake Paul a white man is posting him breaking In fashion square all over social media and nothing’s being done???? WHY???
— Quarantine Clitoria (@okvixky) May 31, 2020
Ew Jake Paul is in my state rn?
— Arrokuda (@arrokudatime) May 31, 2020
Let’s all be aware of how white people are hijacking our peaceful demonstrations for their personal amusement. It is not lost on me that during this global pandemic, many of these people are using this as a personal stimulant and adrenaline boost. It’s truly disgusting. https://t.co/bKT0LODZ3w
— Miel (@bebegatexo) May 30, 2020
White people who go to protest PLEASE LISTEN TO BLACK PEOPLE. IF THEY ARE TELLING YOU TO STOP DESTROYING PROPERTY!! STOP DESTROYING PROPERTY. You are hijacking a movement that isn’t ours!!!!!!! You’re supposed to protect black people!!
— (@8bitvamp) May 30, 2020
Writer for Movieweb since 2017. Enjoys playing Catan when not writing about superheroes and Star Wars.