At least 130 spring breakers have been charged over the past two weeks for drinking alcohol on the beach in Panama City, police say.
While the $500 citations weren’t likely welcomed by the college students, they represent a drop in the number of violations issued in Panama City, where drinking alcohol on the beach in March has been illegal since 2015, says Police Chief J.R. Talamantez. “All in all, we’re happy with the enforcement that our officers are taking out there, and the overall atmosphere that we’re currently seeing,” he says.
However, the same can’t be said for neighboring Okaloosa County, where sheriff’s deputies have cited more than 310 spring breakers for alcohol violations since February 27th, according to Sheriff’s Lieutenant Jason Fulghum. “I think it will break last year’s record,” he says.
“And the reason I think it will is because there’s a lot more people who have been released from the COVID restrictions, and they didn’t get to go on spring break for the last couple of years.”