Spring Break shootings led to a state of emergency declaration in Miami Beach, FL Monday instituting a curfew as officers struggle to deal with lawless and chaotic partiers.
Late Monday, Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber joined Police Chief Richard Clements and City Manager Alina Hudak for a press conference where they announced the state of emergency. Meant to help with crowd control for the remainder of spring break, an initial curfew will run from 12:01am Thursday and continue on until 6am Monday March 28 and will be focused in the neighborhood of South Beach.
“We don’t ask for spring break, we don’t promote it, we don’t encourage it,” Gelber said at the press conference, “we just endure it, and frankly it’s not something we want to endure.”
City of Miami Beach to Host Press Conference Today at 4 p.m.
– To Announce the Declaration of a State of Emergency –
— City of Miami Beach (@MiamiBeachNews) March 21, 2022
Hudak explained that the City Commission will be holding an emergency meeting on Tuesday to address an extension of the curfew she imposed by executive order. “It is my hope that our city commission will authorize me to impose the same for the following weekend.”
Following a shooting incident that wounded three people shortly after midnight Sunday, an official for the Miami Beach Fraternal Order of Police issued a statement targeted at their local government pleading for action.
This weekend, we’ve had 4 @MiamiBeachPD officers injured. This video is a snippet of the crowds and dangers we face. Officers are EXHAUSTED. The party needs to end. City officials must take immediate and firm action to ensure the safety of officers and residents. #SpringBreak pic.twitter.com/ZpL0rk2Ch9
— Miami Beach FOP (@MiamiBeachFOP) March 20, 2022
“This weekend, we’ve had 4 @MiamiBeachPD officers injured,” they wrote in a tweet that accompanied a video of officers surrounded by crowds and being forced to retreat.
“This video is a snippet of the crowds and dangers we face. Officers are EXHAUSTED. The party needs to end. City officials must take immediate action,” the statement implored, “and firm action to ensure the safety of officers and residents.”
“We just simply cannot have people come to our city and have to worry about being shot,” Gelber stated.
Despite deploying more than 370 officers over the weekend, a total of five individuals were shot in that span and nearly 100 guns have been seized in the last four weeks. “This isn’t your father’s or your mother’s spring break,” the mayor added. “This is something wholly different.”
Posted on social media, a brawl breaks out on 10th street last night during Spring Break Miami Beach 2022. pic.twitter.com/g0WlfLG0Pu
— South Beach News (@sobenews) March 20, 2022
During the press conference Hudak took note of the fact that, though plans had been made on how to handle the influx of tourists, the city was not designed to sustain so many people at once. “It was not built for these types of crowds,” she stated. “Our residents and our visitors have every right to ask what are we going to do about it.”
Spring break is back with a vengeance as raucous crowds storm South Florida; West Point cadets OD https://t.co/cUtCSMjqlr
— Jack Furnari (@JackBPR) March 13, 2022
This is considered to be the first traditional spring break since the pandemic and the state of Florida anticipated more than half a million party-goers to descend upon their beaches, potentially 29 percent more than in 2019.
Florida beaches had already introduced safety restrictions like banning of tents and furniture and even coolers in some instances. Despite enhanced precautions, the situation has remained out of control.
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