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Miami Beach Calmer This Week, Clevelander South Beach Opens Restaurants, Bars

MIAMI (CBSMiami) - After a chaotic weekend that led to extended curfews in Miami Beach's entertainment district, the scene on South Beach has been calmer this week.

On Wednesday, the Clevelander South Beach, which closed its bars and restaurants last Friday due to safety concerns, reopened them to the public.

Managers feared for the safety of their staff after a stampede poured into the Clevelander when a fight broke out and a crowd trashed the place.

"I feel lucky they opened and I got to experience it," said Michelle Maga, who just flew in from Indiana to visit her friend who has lived on South Beach for two years.

Resident Jade Williams says what's been happening is alarming.

"It's scary because I walk everywhere. So, I find myself not leaving my apartment. It's not safe to walk alone," she says.

"It's not surprising it's corona time. Getting crazy out here," said spring breaker Quinn Jennings.

The Miami Beach bedlam taking center stage at Wednesday's community relations board meeting.

"Unlike past spring breaks, this crowd is more aggressive and there have been more arrests," said Miam Beach Deputy Chief Wayne Jones.

Tuesday was a relatively quiet night in Miami Beach. People were out enjoying dinner or walking around Ocean Drive.

"I'm from Ohio. There's not anything going on in Ohio at all," said Ebony Fadis. "We were just excited to come out, not for spring break, just for a family vacation to enjoy the beach."

Some vacationers hoped a change of scenery would help combat COVID lockdown fatigue.

"It's been a year, and we've been in this for a long time," said Aaliyah, who was visiting from New York.

There are the usual rowdy spring breakers, which can be expected, but police said there have been crimes that are much more serious than people partying.

Two North Carolina men went before a judge, accused of drugging and raping Christine Englehardt, who was found dead in her hotel room.

Evoire Collier, 21, and Dorian Taylor, 24, also reportedly stole her credit cards.

Police say another crime was committed by a Georgia man.

Randall Dijon Lee, 23, was arrested for allegedly threatening a valet with a gun over a $60 fee.

Over the weekend, the City of Miami Beach implemented an extended weekend curfew in the entertainment district.

"It obviously sucks because we traveled all the way here," says Malia Old. "We were not expecting it, but it's valid. People's lives are at stake and at the end of the day that's what matters."

Meanwhile, in Broward, Mayor Steve Geller said they have not had any major issues, despite having, what he describes, as a younger crowd.

"The Mayor of Miami Beach has said the majority of the visitors to his city are over 25," Geller explained. "The majority of spring break visitors to Broward are college students."

Miami Beach Police said in the last six weeks, they have made about 1,000 arrests and confiscated about 100 firearms. The city's Thursdays through Sundays the curfew is from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., and that is scheduled to last through April 12.

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