Miami Beach police make changes for Memorial Day weekend

More officers, watch towers to be used

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MIAMI BEACH, Fla. - Plan to break the law during Memorial Day weekend? Miami Beach police will be watching you.

On Thursday, officials at a Miami Beach community meeting announced that the city purchased two more watch towers to be placed in several locations around South Beach. The towers, which have the capability to shoot and record video, will be manned by a police officer.

According to a Miami Beach spokesperson, last year there was one watch tower in operation on the beach during Memorial Day weekend. This year, there will be four.

Miami Beach Police will also be working with more officers from other agencies this year.

There will be more vice units, members of a countywide gang task force, and additional bicycle officers. The Florida Highway Patrol has committed a larger number of officers this year, according to Miami Beach police Lt. Enrique Doce.

For the first time, the city will pay professional event staff personnel to be deployed in squads and supervised by police. Doce said they will be working in high-volume areas along Ocean Drive in addition to volunteers known as Goodwill Ambassadors.

For aspiring entrepreneurs who want to get the word out about their businesses during Memorial Day weekend: don't think about passing out flyers on South Beach.

Miami Beach officials said an ordinance is being proposed to prohibit handbill distribution during events and "high impact" times like Memorial Day weekend.

The city of Miami Beach will hold community meetings for residents interested in discussing Memorial Day weekend every Thursday through May 17th at City Hall.

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