Miami Beach

Miami Beach to Step Up Patrols Ahead of Spring Break Season

With spring break around the corner, officials are making sure more officers will be out in full force.

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Miami Beach wants to be known for the sun, surf and sand — but lately, the city's experienced a rash of crimes.

With spring break around the corner, officials are making sure more officers will be out in full force.

“These recent incidents that happened with tourists coming to our city with guns and engaging in crime is not Miami Beach and will not be tolerated," said Commissioner Michael Góngora.

At a virtual meeting this week, city commissioners made a plan to crack down on illegal or unruly behaviors in their city — especially during spring break.

From Feb. 15 until April 11, code enforcement officers, as well as more police from Miami Beach and Miami-Dade, will be out on patrol on South Beach.

"For people that wanted to come here and commit crimes, that sends the message, stay somewhere else," Góngora said.

This tough stance comes after the city has seen a recent string of crimes. Just two days ago, four people were arrested after a fight outside The Licking restaurant. And two weekends ago, there was a triple shooting on 8th and Washington. A man from New York was identified as the suspect and is still at large.

As part of the city’s plan, goodwill ambassadors will be checking beach entryways for any prohibited items like alcohol, coolers or inflatables. There will also be some limitations on parking and alcohol sales in the entertainment district.

“As the point of view from a business, it’s not gonna be beneficial because we’re probably gonna lose some revenue," said Jose Ormaza, the owner of On Ocean 7 Cafe. "But on the other hand, you would have to look at the safety of the tourists.”

This business owner says the changes could affect his bottom line, but he believes the measures will be good for overall the safety of his patrons.

“Having more cops on the streets on Ocean Drive will be beneficial for business owners. Whatever it takes to ensure the safety of the guests," Ormaza said.

You can expect to see the enforcement measures in effect starting Monday.

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