Miami Beach leaders getting tough on Spring Break 2021 amid rising crime

Police said they anticipate the largest and longest Spring Break this year in Miami Beach and they need to be ready for it.

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Miami Beach leaders are meeting ahead of what some anticipate to be the largest and longest Spring Break they’ve seen in a while and they say they are going to be ready.

City officials are recognizing that there is a problem that’s consistently bubbling up in Miami Beach’s Entertainment district and they want to send a strong message.

Raul Aguila, the interim city manager of Miami Beach, had harsh words.

“Miami Beach is not going to tolerate anarchy for Spring Break 2021,” he said.

On Wednesday, leaders discussed a range of issues but the hot topic was the spate of violence recently seen in the city.

Last week on Sunday, a triple shooting near 8th and Washington left three people injured and a manhunt ever since for the accused shooter. He has been identified as Keshawn McLean from New York.

There have been fights, stabbings, and armed robberies in the Entertainment District, an area that Mayor Dan Gelber says has become problematic and undesirable for residents.

“You can’t pay us for this kind of distress, we don’t want it,” Gelber said.

At their meeting Wednesday, commissioners tossed around a number of aggressive ideas to curb the crime problem.

Tactics included having officers work more hours and putting more cops on the street with help from Miami-Dade Police, which is already happening.

Businesses on South Beach would also be under strict code enforcement. Some establishments that serve alcohol could soon be required to hire off-duty police officers during certain hours.

“This is about raising the bar on sidewalk cafes. If ever there was a time to raise that bar, it’s now,” said Mark Samuelian, Miami Beach city commissioner.

About the Author:

Terrell Forney joined Local 10 News in October 2005 as a general assignment reporter. He was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, but a desire to escape the harsh winters of the north brought him to South Florida.