Indiana man accused of inciting riot on crowded Miami Beach street

first_imgJoe Raedle/Getty ImagesBy EMILY SHAPIRO, ABC News(MIAMI BEACH, Fla.) — An Indiana man is accused of inciting a riot in Miami Beach amid a surge of tourists in the city, according to authorities.The city of Miami Beach declared a state of emergency for its entertainment district on Saturday amid concerns of a COVID-19 surge following spring break parties. The Miami Beach City Commission has enacted a Thursday-to-Sunday 8 p.m. curfew for the entertainment district through the morning of April 12.The incident unfolded Sunday night as authorities responded to a crowd of about 400 to 500 people who were blocking roads, vandalizing cars, playing loud music, drinking alcohol, smoking marijuana, burglarizing and refusing to disperse, according to the arrest affidavit.Officers told the revelers to leave, explaining that the city was under a state of emergency and those who don’t comply could be arrested, the affidavit said.The crowd was uncooperative, Miami Beach police said. Some people made “obscene gestures” toward officers, police said, and some jumped on cars, leaving roofs caved in and windshields shattered.Officers saw 30-year-old Jovan Washington playing music from a speaker; he was allegedly “enticing those around to engage in unruly behavior” and “to not follow the commands of officers,” the affidavit said.The police, who were outnumbered, claimed Washington’s actions “provoked the crowd to become more hostile towards officers,” the affidavit said.The officers claimed they asked Washington, of Lafayette, Indiana, “to stop his actions multiple times, to no avail,” the affidavit said.Officers then confiscated the speaker and arrested Washington, police said. Charges against Washington include incite to riot, disorderly conduct and curfew violation.At his first court appearance Tuesday, Washington told the judge, “My speaker wasn’t even that loud,”ABC Miami affiliate WPLG reported.His arraignment is set for April 20. ABC News could not immediately reach his attorney for comment.“We’re the only real destination, it seems like, open across the country, so tens of thousands of people are flocking here,” Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber told ABC News’ Good Morning America Monday. “We’re trying to get a handle on it. And we’re only doing it through policing and a curfew and shutting down our causeways coming into our city in the evening.”To those looking to party in Miami Beach, the mayor pleaded: “If you’re coming here because you think anything goes and the rules don’t apply … you’re wrong.”“Please vacation responsibly.”Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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LIRR: Hicksville & Jamaica Hubs to Get Multi-Million Dollar Makeover

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Long Island’s commuters can expect major modernization efforts at both the Long Island Rail Road’s Hicksville and Jamaica stations, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday.According to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, work has begun on a $121 million initiative to rebuild and modernize the Hicksville station, considered by the agency to be the busiest train station on Long Island. In addition, the LIRR has awarded a $64.9 million contract to create a new platform and tracks at the Jamaica station, the LIRR’s central hub and main transfer point for the railroad.In Hicksville, the upgrades to the 55-year-old station will include Wi-Fi throughout the station, plus USB charging stations inside an enhanced glass-enclosed waiting room. New platforms will be outfitted with improved lighting and a translucent canopy roof, and aging stairways, escalators, elevators will be improved.The railroad is also investing in a video security system, audio and digital communications systems, and better signage. The renovated station will also include new laminated art glass installations. Construction at Hicksville is slated to begin later this month, and the station work is expected to be completed by the spring of 2018.“Revamping these two heavily trafficked transportation hubs will provide better, faster and more reliable train service for Long Island Rail Road riders,” Gov. Cuomo said in a statement. “Time and time again, transportation investment has a ripple effect of progress and economic growth on the surrounding community.”Artist rendering of what a renovated Hicksville Long Island Rail Road station would look like.The formal announcements on both projects were made at the Conference on Sustainable Development and Collaborative Governance held Wednesday afternoon at the Huntington Hilton.The MTA also announced that the LIRR’s Jamaica station is slated for upgrades that seek to increase the hub’s capacity and usability.The new platform and tracks at Jamaica station will allow the LIRR to more easily re-route trains, take tracks out of service, and support supplemental train service to and from Atlantic Terminal for customers attending games and events at the Barclays Center. The new platform will also feature glass-enclosed heated waiting areas, as well as Wi-Fi and USB charging stations for riders. In addition, the station will be adorned with brightly colored art glass installations on the station’s westerly bridge, and also on the stairs leading from the new station platform to the AirTrain mezzanine.The rebuilt station at Hicksville and new platform at Jamaica, slated to open in 2019, are two in a series of the LIRR system-wide capacity improvement projects, which also include an uninterrupted second track between Farmingdale and Ronkonkoma, and a third track on the Main Line from Floral Park to Hicksville, as well as the East Side Access project to bring LIRR trains into Grand Central Terminal.Once East Side Access is complete, the new platform at Jamaica station will help to enhance service between Atlantic Terminal in Brooklyn and Jamaica Station, enabling shuttle trains to depart every 7½ minutes during rush hour and every 15 minutes during off-peak hours, providing a higher level of service than that available under current timetables, according to the MTA.The projects are supported by the state’s $27 billion MTA Capital Program, according to the governor’s office.Rich Murdocco writes about Long Island’s land use and real estate development issues. He received his Master’s in Public Policy at Stony Brook University, where he studied regional planning under Dr. Lee Koppelman, Long Island’s esteemed master planner. More of his views can be found on TheFoggiestIdea.org or follow him on Twitter @TheFoggiestIdea.last_img read more

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