AUSTIN (KXAN) -
Austin's Assistant Police Chief is calling it a "chaotic scene."
Hundreds of people gathering outside area malls in an aggressive attempt to get their hands on a limited pair of Nike Air Jordan tennis shoes.
An Austin police officer was trampled by a crowd at Highland mall and had to be treated at a hospital for broken ankle, bumps and bruises.
In other places though the crowds got verbally aggressive, like at a Footlocker in the Hancock Center.
"They were trying to cus out the manager, I heard and stuff," said shopper Adrian Lopez.
Lopez wasn't trying to buy the Nike Air Jordan retros but saw lots of people who were Thursday night.
"I think they did go a little overboard with the hype and everything about it," said Lopez.
At all three area malls, Lakeline, Barton Creek Square and Highland, some waited throughout the day to buy the shoes. Then around 10 pm, hundreds showed up and cops say some got aggressive.
"Officers were called to respond when the crowds started to get unruly to the point of pushing on doors to get into the mall those kinds of things," said Austin Police Assistant Chief Sean Mannix.
At Barton Creek Square, police used pepper spray and called for their chopper to keep an eye on things from up above.
An officer at Highland was trampled to the ground.
"The injured officer stated while on the ground he was intentionally kicked and stomped," said Mannix.
Due to the crowds, the malls canceled midnight sales and did a soft release of the shoes around three Friday morning.
Stores put up signs to let customers know the shoes are sold out. Each store had only received about 150 pairs of the shoes. No arrests have been made yet, but police are looking through surveillance video to identify those who acted out.
"We're always saddened when one of our own is injured especially when it's something senseless," said Mannix.
Meanwhile, Lopez wonders if those who got rowdy, ever gave a thought to the true spirit of the season.
"I don't know why they act crazy over some shoes like that. You're supposed to spread holiday cheer and not try to hurt people over some shoes," said Lopez.
The Nike Air Jordan retros cost about $175 per pair. They're now selling on eBay for as much as $500.
Police say if they find those who were abusive, they could face charges of assault, and possibly even assault on a law enforcement officer for the incident at Highland Mall.
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