Miami Beach Commissioners voted not to extend the spring break curfew, which was enforced on Sunday night following two deadly shootings over the weekend.
The decision was made after a heated debate during an emergency meeting, with the vote-winning 4-3.
Despite the violence and chaos of spring break in Miami Beach, which has been occurring for the past three years, a majority of the commissioners agreed that a curfew is not a long-term solution.
Instead, there may need to be metal detectors, security fences, or other measures installed next year in certain sections of Miami Beach. However, the liquor stores in South Beach will be forced to close early at 6 pm next weekend.
Mayor Dan Gelber expressed concern over the unruly nature of too many people, the presence of guns, and the peril it has created. Miami Beach police reported at least 322 arrests on a variety of charges between Feb. 27 and Sunday, and more than 70 firearms were confiscated during that time.
Miami Beach will not have a spring break curfew next weekend despite recent deadly shootings, according to a report by NBC 6’s Jamie Guirola. Commissioners voted on Monday to not extend the curfew that had been enforced on Sunday night in response to two fatal shootings that occurred over the weekend.
This decision won in a 4-3 vote after a heated debate in an emergency meeting.
Miami Beach has been struggling with spring break violence for the third year in a row, including two fatal shootings and unruly crowds, despite a massive police presence and activities designed to give people alternatives to drinking alcohol and roaming the streets. The city imposed an overnight curfew that ended on Monday morning but decided not to enforce a second curfew next weekend, when the Ultra Music Festival will draw thousands of people to South Beach.
Commissioner Kristen Rosen Gonzalez noted that the worst chaos usually occurs on the third weekend of spring break. However, Commissioner Ricky Arriola expressed his concern, saying that there may need to be metal detectors, security fences, or other measures installed in certain sections of Miami Beach next year. He also highlighted that dozens of businesses and their workers depend on the crowds that the Ultra event brings in.
Although the panel did decide to force liquor stores in the South Beach area to close early at 6 p.m. next weekend, as it did last year, officials did point out that the city manager still has emergency authority to order a 72-hour curfew despite the commission's reluctance.
Mayor Dan Gelber has expressed his desire to stop the violence and disorder, stating that the volume of people in the city, the unruly nature of too many, and the presence of guns have created a peril that cannot go unchecked. He also added that they don't ask for spring break in the city and don't want spring break in the city.
Miami Beach police reported at least 322 arrests on various charges between February 27 and Sunday, with more than 70 firearms confiscated in that time. This is despite police officers working up to 14-hour shifts six days a week, according to a city emergency declaration.
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