Mike Taylor, an Florida fisherman and YouTuber, was one of the parties involved in the Miami Beach open carry incident last week when Miami Beach police officers arrived on the scene with guns drawn. His footage is a much clearer record of what happened that day than previous video (see earlier posts here, here and here).
The incident started when a Miami Beach park ranger approached the group and informed them that they were committing illegal acts. Mr. Taylor handed the ranger a pamphlet containing Florida Statute 790.25(3)(h) and informed him that they were acting within the law and committing no crime.
The ranger then contacted MBPD.
Here is Taylor’s video of the incident (NSFW due to language):
What’s alarming is that while waiting for the police, at no point did Mr. Taylor or the other fishermen threaten anyone. You can then see the MBPD officers arriving on scene with their guns drawn, claiming that the fishermen were a threat.
The group provided evidence that they informed the Miami Beach police department by phone and my mail in advance of the incident, as well as the Miami city attorney.
As more evidence continues to come out of the incident, it appears that the City of Miami Beach clearly violated these Floridians’ First, Second, and Fourth Amendment rights. As a South Florida native and law enforcement officer, I’m sadden by the actions of MBPD. I grew up with the belief that an American’s civil rights are fundamental and must be protected and respected at all costs. In this case, due to ignorance of established Florida law, they clearly weren’t.