Miami Beach police expect big spring break crowds for next 2 weeks

Police chief vows to crack down on crime

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – The next two weeks are expected to be the busiest in South Florida during the spring break holiday.

Spring break chaos and violence has already been on display in Miami Beach with at least one brawl caught on cellphone video this week on Ocean Drive and Seventh Street. 

"Unfortunately, that kind of behavior happens all too often during spring break," Miami Beach Police Chief Dan Oates said. "It's part of the behavior we're trying to control."

Oates initially warned that colleges and universities would be notified if a student was put under arrest. 

"Any of the behavior that we are arresting people for here in Miami Beach, OK, would not be tolerated on any of the campuses," Oates said.  

But the chief is now taking a step back from the measure.

"Well, we got a lot of feedback from some community leaders that this seemed a little too harsh," he said. 

But the chief said units will be out enforcing behavior control with zero tolerance, especially if you're intoxicated.

Ocean Drive will be shut down to traffic every weekend from noon Friday to 3 a.m. 

And the MacArthur and Julia Tuttle Causeways will be equipped with license plate readers to monitor and control traffic entering and leaving the beach.

Oates said they're gearing up for an influx of as many as 10,000 people on the beach.

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