'Prison over a pair of sneakers': Dozens arrested for looting during Irma
Looters are seen stealing items from a Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Simon's Sportswear store.
Published Monday, September 11, 2017 10:43AM EDT
With looters in Florida braving the torrential rains and winds of Hurricane Irma to steal a few things over the weekend from boarded-up stores, local police forces are issuing this warning: You will be caught.
The Miami-Dade County Police Department says officers have made nearly 30 arrests so far of people trying to make off with electronics, sports equipment, cellphones and more from local businesses that locked their doors to escape the storm.
To try to curtail some of the looting, Miami police issued a curfew Saturday that runs from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. The curfew gives officers the right to stop anyone spotted on the streets to question them on why they are out during the storm.
Miami police took to Twitter to publicly shame some of those they have arrested, posting a picture of a group of accused looters sitting in a police holding area.
“Thinking about looting?” they wrote, “Ask these guys how that turned out.”
Further north, in Fort Lauderdale, police arrested nine people looting local sports stores, pawn shops and a Wal-Mart.
Fort Lauderdale Police also took to Twitter to warn against looting, quoting Chief Rick Maglione, who said: "Going to prison over a pair of sneakers is a fairly bad life choice."
Over in nearby Pembroke Pines, Fla., in Broward County, the local police department and sheriff each issued warnings to looters to stay away.
Any looters who come to Pembroke Pines will be greeted by our officers. Choose wisely and stay home. https://t.co/9ETgZKgYla— Pembroke Pines PD (@PPinesPD) September 10, 2017
ATTENTION LOOTERS; Every incident will be investigated. Evidence collected will be used to pursue charges after the fact. #HurrcaneIrma— Broward Sheriff (@browardsheriff) September 10, 2017