Miami Beach curfew aims to cut down raucous nights

"This has been the most difficult environment that I’ve had to deal with in 30 years,” Miami Beach's police chief says.

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – The curfew is back on Miami Beach.

Most everyone will have to be in from 12:30 a.m. through 5 a.m. Alcohol sales at all retail locations will cut off at 8 p.m. on Thursday.

It all lasts until further notice and violators are subject to arrest.

After Tuesday morning’s shooting on Ocean Drive that followed a confrontation outside a restaurant, and videos of raucous crowds, city leaders said more had to be done to reduce physical interactions and help police with enforcement.

One business owner told a commissioner that the situation has gotten unmanageable. The police chief agrees.

“He’s right. This has been the most difficult environment that I’ve had to deal with in 30 years,” Chief Richard Clements said.

Across Miami-Dade County, crucial decisions are being made as the infection rate goes up. Miami-Dade has the most COVID-19 cases and death in the state, and the county’s death toll from the virus reached 1,000 on Wednesday.

Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez announced a countywide mask mandate, both indoors and outdoors.

“What is troubling is the increase in the percentage of positive [tests],” Gimenez said. “We need to tamp down the contagion level.”

Most restaurants in the county now have to close on-site dining by 12:30 a.m.

Hotel pools must close at 8 p.m. over the July 4 holiday weekend.

And in the City of Miami, businesses that repeatedly don’t follow the rules could face a 30-day shutdown, with their owners subject to arrest.

About the Author:

Janine Stanwood joined Local 10 News in February 2004 as an assignment editor. She is now a general assignment reporter. Before moving to South Florida from her Washington home, Janine was the senior legislative correspondent for a United States senator on Capitol Hill.