After his police officers were publicly embarrassed for not knowing state law and mistreating a group of open carry activists over the weekend, Miami Beach Police Chief Daniel J. Oates, through Miami Beach police spokesman Ernesto Rodriguez, claimed to the Miami Herald that he never received prior notification, either by e-mail or regular mail, from Florida Carry of their open carry fishing event.
Given the current climate, if six people show up to a pier in South Beach carrying guns, our citizens expect us to respond promptly and address any potential danger. We did so, and I am confident our officers acted appropriately.
According to MBPD records, no citizen or resident of Miami Beach contacted the police reporting any possible danger at the sight of a group of men displaying holstered firearms while fishing. It was a city park ranger who called the police. At no point was the public aware or concerned by the event.
Florida Carry has stated via their Facebook page;
The illegal attack on our members by the Miami Beach PD is a developing incident. We are pouring every necessary resource in to this incident.
We already know that one Florida Carry member contacted MBPD in advance and was given the runaround by a series of officers.
Additionally, Florida Carry has provided a copy of the letter that was sent more than two weeks prior to the June 24 event.
June 7, 2018
My name is Christopher Philpot and I am an avid Florida Fisherman. The reason I am writing your office is because I wanted to notify you that on June 24, 2018 a few friends and I will be open carrying holstered handguns while fishing off of South Pointe Pier in Miami Beach. As you probably already know the open carrying of any firearm is legal in The State of Florida, pursuant a person engaged in fishing, camping, or lawful hunting or going to or returning from a fishing, camping, or lawful hunting expedition.
It is outlined by our State Legislators in Florida Statute: 790.25, The provisions of ss. 790.053 (Open Carrying of Weapons) 790.06 (License to carry concealed weapon or firearm) do not apply in the following instances, and, despite such sections, it is lawful for the following persons to own, possess, and lawfully use firearms and other weapons, ammunition, and supplies for lawful purposes (h) A person engaged in fishing, camping, or lawful hunting or going to or returning from a fishing, camping, or lawful hunting expedition.
The reason I wanted to reach out to your office is because I’m sure there will be citizens that do not know the law.They may contact Law Enforcement when they see someone open carrying a holstered handgun. I just want to be sure that The City of Miami Beach & Law Enforcement are fully aware that what we are doing is completely legal. My friends and I are law abiding citizens. We legally own our firearms and we have never committed any felonies or violent crimes. We are just a few people that love to fish and celebrate our Freedom & Second Amendment rights!
CC- Eric Friday, Richard Nascak, Scott Whigham, Dennis Fields
Furthermore, Eric Friday, legal council of Florida Carry has stated that not only did Florida Carry send notifications to the City of Miami Beach Police Department, but they also sent notified the City Attorney.
We’re told that end result of this incident will be a suit filed by Florida Carry against the City of Miami Beach. A pre-suit notice is being prepared now. Watch this space. Stay tuned.