Florida: More than 160 people arrested in Panama City Beach as spring break crowds disrupt the region


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Law enforcement officials arrested more than 160 people in Panama City Beach after a spring break weekend that saw massive crowds of people disrupt the area, officials said.

Bay County Sheriff Tommy Ford said 161 people were arrested and jailed over the weekend and officers seized 75 firearms amid their confrontations with those individuals, WRIC reported.

PANAMA CITY BEACH IN FLORIDA SPRING BREAK FESTIVITIES PROMPT POLICE CLOSURE OF STREETS, SAYS REPORT

“What we saw last weekend is absolutely unacceptable. Period,” said Police Chief JR Talamantez, who also confirmed that several businesses closed on Friday as crowds gathered and disrupted the normal flow of business, according to the report.

Spring breaker party at a popular hotspot in Panama City Beach – Hammerhead Fred’s Wet and Wild Foam Party.
(Joshua Comins/Fox News Digital)

“The crowd that’s been here this weekend, there’s [sic] no words can describe how they behaved, conducted themselves and how many laws they broke,” he added.

Videos taken at a local Walmart showed rowdy shoppers throwing away goods, WRIC reported.

Spring breakers stopped by police along Beach Road in Panama City Beach, Florida.

Spring breakers stopped by police along Beach Road in Panama City Beach, Florida.
(Joshua Comins/Fox News Digital)

A heavy police presence was then called to the area to help these businesses, which did not wish to risk any inconvenience or harm to their customers or their business, the head of Panama City said.

SPRING BREAKERS LET GO Amid Rising NATIONWIDE CRIME, CURFEW DECLARED IN POPULAR DESTINATION

There have been no reports of violence since the first day of the weekend, but a shooting incident on Saturday left one person injured, Talamantez said, noting that many of those arrested had firearms with them.

Police disperse spring break crowds at Panama City Beach.

Police disperse spring break crowds at Panama City Beach.
(Joshua Comins/Fox News Digital)

“I personally encountered an individual holding an AR-15 who is now in custody,” Talamantez said, according to the WRIC report.

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“These are the type of individuals that we face,” he added. “Throwing beer bottles at police officers. Shooting in the road. There were blue lights along the road at the time these shootings took place. The blatant disregard for public safety that these individuals have will not be tolerated .”

Mayor Mark Sheldon said the crime was not caused by spring breakers, but by criminals who came out under the mob’s shroud.


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