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Fort Lauderdale police have reported double the number of spring break-related arrests in March compared to last year, attributing the increase to larger crowds and an influx of people from Miami Beach. Despite the increase in arrests, police have responded to incidents like disturbances and fights promptly and without issue. The busiest weekend of the season occurred two weekends ago, coinciding with St. Patrick’s Day festivities, while this past weekend was nearly washed out due to severe weather. The weather emptied the beaches, sending visitors and locals indoors to bars and restaurants. However, by Sunday, the weather cleared, allowing for a last-minute beach bash before visitors departed.

Out of the 18 spring break-related arrests in Fort Lauderdale, only three were considered spring breakers according to police definitions. The majority of arrests were for drug-related offenses, thefts, and other infractions committed by locals or individuals from Miami. The weekend saw a calm scene in most of Florida’s spring break hot spots, with isolated incidents of violence occurring along the coast. Notable incidents included multiple shootings in Jacksonville and a gunman fleeing the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office in New Smyrna Beach. Despite these incidents, the number of arrests in Miami Beach remained relatively steady compared to previous years.

Law enforcement efforts in Florida, including the deployment of over 140 state troopers, license plate readers, and drones, have contributed to a decrease in spring break-related chaos. Governor Ron DeSantis described the state’s actions as “unprecedented” in preparation for the spring break season. The mayor of Miami Beach noted that this year has been one of the calmest spring breaks in years, with lower levels of crime and violence compared to previous years. The state’s proactive measures seem to have been effective in preventing the escalation of crimes seen in previous spring break seasons, particularly in South Beach.

Despite the increase in spring break-related arrests in Fort Lauderdale, law enforcement has managed to respond to incidents effectively, maintaining order during the busy season. The recent severe weather impacted the number of visitors at beaches, leading to a quieter weekend in some areas. The breakdown of arrest incidents shows a mix of issues involving locals, visitors from Miami, and a small number of spring breakers. Overall, law enforcement efforts throughout the state of Florida appear to have successfully minimized the chaos typically associated with spring break, resulting in a calmer and safer environment for residents and visitors alike. Governor DeSantis’ initiative to deploy additional resources and personnel seems to have made a significant impact in maintaining public safety during the busy spring break season.

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