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South Beach is about to make some major changes

South Beach calls for changes after uptick in crime, chaos
South Beach calls for changes after uptick in crime, chaos

SOUTH BEACH, Fla. – “As we all know and understand, the many years of troubling incidents in this district can no longer be tolerated,” begins a report from the City Manager of Miami Beach to the City of Miami Beach Mayor and Commission.

Due to increased crime, chaos, and destruction during peak periods of tourism in South Beach’s “entertainment district” (the busy area of South Beach), the City of Miami Beach City Manager and City of Miami Beach Mayor have had enough with the crime.

“It is no longer sufficient to treat what has historically been defined as ‘high impact periods’ as anomalies when every weekend brings significant crowds and challenges,” he says in his letter, which was sent on Friday.

From gunfire and stabbings to mass misbehavior on the streets and the cold-blooded murder of a young father in front of his family in broad daylight — just last week — things are starting to finally change in South Beach. Hopefully.

The Mayor of Miami Beach Dan Gelber kicked off the Labor Day holiday weekend announcing, what he says, will be the highest level of police presence ever seen on South Beach’s entertainment district to fight crime.

Here are the changes being made in South Beach:

  • 40 additional officers reassigned to South Beach
  • 10 additional Miami-Dade Police officers every weekend
  • More Code Compliance teams
  • More homeless outreach and sanitation teams
  • More park rangers

It’s the latest round of increased policing on the beach following the wave of overwhelming violence during this pandemic.

“This year alone we’ve arrested 3,154 people in South Beach and 1,193 of these arrestees more than half were in just the tiny entertainment district,” says Gelber.

But even the Mayor himself says this likely won’t be enough.

“We will throw more police, more code officers at this challenge, but we must acknowledge that it’s just not sustainable.”

About the Authors:

Nicole Lopez-Alvar is a Miami-born and raised journalist and TV personality covering South Florida and beyond for Local10.com.

Christian De La Rosa joined Local 10 News in April 2017 after spending time as a reporter and anchor in Atlanta, San Diego, Orlando and Panama City Beach.