Spring break crime warning: Miami police chief sounds alarm after fights, shooting

MIAMI -- Miami's police chief is warning hundreds of colleges about a crime crackdown as spring breakers descend on the city.

An all-out melee on famed Ocean Drive was one of dozens of brawls across Miami Beach in the days since Spring Break kicked off, and two college football players were even hospitalized after they were robbed and shot.

Police said Tuesday morning they are cracking down to prevent the widespread violence and unrest from escalating. The city is giving police an additional $700,000 this year so more officers can be on patrol - mostly for spring break. Authorities are even using infrared radar technology to keep an eye on the growing crowds after dark.

"I sent letters to somewhere around 300-400 college presidents across the United States in addition to the presidents of every Greek fraternity or sorority," Miami Police Chief Daniel Oates said. "We're cracking down on quality of life offenses like drinking in public, smoking weed."

On Saturday, two college football players from Texas A&M College were robbed and shot outside downtown Miami. Both Jay Bias and Xavier Morris remain in the hospital in stable condition.

"They were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. They'd come in on a red eye to start spring break and literally the first place they went was to the grocery store... and unfortunately they didn't quite make it back," said Tim McMurray, director of athletics at Texas A&M.

Police are still gathering details on what led up to the shooting.

The mayor of Miami Beach has seen the videos of those fights breaking out. He calls the situation unacceptable.

An emergency meeting is planned to discuss safety concerns during spring break. Miami Beach police are gearing up for another big weekend and said they are prepared for about six weeks of spring break.
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