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(WINK Fort Myers)   So you buy a beer at a bar... mingle around for awhile, then walk to an art gallery across the street carrying said beer. Police threaten to arrest: C) The Bartender behind the bar   (winknews.com) divider line 61
    More: Florida, drinking ages, technicality  
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4778 clicks; posted to Main » on 01 Mar 2013 at 3:12 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-03-01 10:58:30 PM  

Slartibartfaster: CruiserTwelve: I don't know about Florida, but in Colorado a liquor licensee is required to ensure the acts allowed by the license are complied with. Most bars have a license that allows for the sale of drinks by the glass to be consumed on the licensed premises. It would be hard to prove that a bar intentionally allowed someone to remove the drink from the premises, but serving drinks in a plastic cup would seem to suggest that they intended for the drink to be removed.

Do you ever get tired of sucking cop dick ?
People like you give the rest of us the reputation we do not deserve.

// life hint: "them and us" is not a goal you should aspire to, it is the reason revolutions often involve us being up against a wall. There is more "them" than "us".


Explaining the law is the equivalant of sucking cop dick? Who knew?
 
2013-03-01 11:59:46 PM  
When I was in high school four of us (all age 17) were sitting on a bench on the sidewalk across the street from The Ohio State University. We were in the process of drinking two bottles of wine when two city police officers approached and told us to pour the remaining wine on the curb and place the empty bottles in a trash can. Then they told us to stay out of trouble and went on their way.  Considering we were intoxicated enough to think it was okay to be sitting there blatantly violating the open container law as people were passing by remarking about said drinking, we were all underage and more then one of us may have been in posession of illicit substances we were fortunate that night. Ah, the decade of the 80's is a time fondly remembered

/ eh, lawns were meant to be walked on
// i remember slashies with fondness too
/// not to mention f(.)(.)bies
 
2013-03-02 06:54:45 AM  

CruiserTwelve: I don't know about Florida, but in Colorado a liquor licensee is required to ensure the acts allowed by the license are complied with. Most bars have a license that allows for the sale of drinks by the glass to be consumed on the licensed premises. It would be hard to prove that a bar intentionally allowed someone to remove the drink from the premises, but serving drinks in a plastic cup would seem to suggest that they intended for the drink to be removed.


Really?

A lot of bars don't use glass drinking vessels. It's just cheaper and easier - and prevents drunks from breaking glasses.

I used to leave bars with bottles all the time - usually around last call. It was illegal and the bars usually made it more difficult by opening them. Or was that a convenience for me?

Oh well, you can fit a number of beers into a large coat.

I don't do that anymore - and it wasn't in Colorado and I'm sure the statute of limitations has expired, but bar staff cannot keep an eye on everyone and every drink in the bar at all times.
 
2013-03-02 06:56:11 AM  
Victimless crimes, and their enforcement, are what Orwell was writing about when he wrote, "...imagine a boot stamping on a human face - forever."
 
2013-03-02 08:58:51 AM  
CruiserTwelve
I don't know about Florida, but in Colorado a liquor licensee is required to ensure the acts allowed by the license are complied with. Most bars have a license that allows for the sale of drinks by the glass to be consumed on the licensed premises. It would be hard to prove that a bar intentionally allowed someone to remove the drink from the premises, but serving drinks in a plastic cup would seem to suggest that they intended for the drink to be removed.

This is part of my problem with police in the United States, they want to find a reason to believe you are guilty. If they were serving beer in coffee cups with a lid, that is one thing. But just based on plastic vs glass, you decided on this chat forum that that is a reason it was meant to be carried out.

Sort of like when those stings with wallets are done, they assume if they are not given to cop passing by (because a cop has a lost and found sign on his back) it is meant to be stolen vs mailed back.

It seems that police depts want to hire someone with a self-assured mental profile these days. Gotta keep up those tough on crime statistics.
 
2013-03-02 01:58:10 PM  

Enemabag Jones: This is part of my problem with police in the United States, they want to find a reason to believe you are guilty. If they were serving beer in coffee cups with a lid, that is one thing. But just based on plastic vs glass, you decided on this chat forum that that is a reason it was meant to be carried out.


You're reading way too much into my post. I'm saying that it's much more likely that a drink served in a plastic cup is expected to be carried out than a drink served in a glass. That's just common sense. If the bar served drinks in glasses and people walked out with them, it would be much easier for the bar to claim they didn't expect people to leave the premises with a drink. Plastic cups, not as easy.

Even in the crappiest dive bars I've ever been in I've never seen drinks served in plastic cups. This is supposed to be a classy place in some kind of arts district.
 
2013-03-03 11:28:41 AM  
First of all, I want to thank all of you for commenting and/or supporting our position in this issue.  Your participation has more impact and effect than you may know.I would like to take a few moments of your time to clarify the situation a bit more precisely than WINK news did in their article, which was necessarily limited to a brief time slot.The issue is that bartenders who serve drinks at outside bars are being unlawfully ticketed by the FMPD.The only time we put out a bar on the patio is when we have community events that bring a far greater number of patrons than usual.  Some of these events are subject to getting a permit with a street closure and subsequent payments to the FMPD and the Department of Sanitation for additional expenses incurred by the event, in addition to the event filing (permitting) fee.  There are approximately 10-15 of these events per year and during these events the "open container" law is not enforced.There are two monthly events; Art Walk and Music Walk, neither of which require a special permit or a street closure.  They are simply sidewalk events which invite local residents to enjoy the art and music available to the downtown in such a way as to encourage exploration and socializing around the downtown area.  Art walk has been going on for 4 years and I started Music walk to complement it 3 years ago.  For 4 years, the police never once made a complaint about anyone walking around with an open container, in fact, I personally witnessed the Mayor of Fort Myers and his wife on several occasions walking down the sidewalk with a glass of wine in their hands, enjoying our beautiful downtown.
In December 2012, the FMPD suddenly began issuing warnings to bar owners and employees that they would be ARRESTED if they were caught serving people who then walked off the licensed premise.  When pressed, a lieutenant in the FMPD told me that if we just "got a permit" we would have no further problems.  Coincidentally, December was when the FMPD was made aware of it's 2013 budget, which included various deep cuts to overtime and other perks.
One problem is that the Art and Music Walk events do not generate any communal income, and there is no possible way of paying this "protection" money to the FMPD without bankrupting nearly every downtown business, many of which don't benefit very much at all from these events.  The permitted events are paid for with donations, rental fees from street vendors, and sponsorships, along with some money given to the RDA (River District Alliance) by the city to hold these types of events.  The method the City uses to bill the RDA for the permitted events is to gather information from various agencies for their overtime hours, add a few thousand, then bill the RDA for whatever the total might be.  When there is an event that has a permit, EVERY SINGLE OFF-DUTY POLICE OFFICER, including retired, auxiliary, and those in leadership, signs up for the overtime, whether they show up for it or not!  The bill for these events can reach into the tens of thousands of dollars for each event.

Arresting or even ticketing a person for a "crime" committed by another person is a reprehensible and disgusting failure on the part of law enforcement.  To do so in such a way as to intimidate merchants and their employees is  typical of Mafia protection rackets.  The fact is; putting pressure on patrons only would not meet the "needs" of the FMPD quickly enough, so they chose to bend the law and damage businesses directly.  The damage is done...both of these fantastic events which previously brought significant traffic and revenue to a formerly resurgent downtown have been damaged and diminished to a point that the difference between an Art Walk or Music Walk and a "normal" night with no event is insignificant.

It's important to note that the "open container" ordinance was originally written with vagrants, vagabonds, mendicants, and town drunks in mind; not the art and music lovers who enjoy a glass of wine during their stroll around the downtown.  In the final analysis, who is being hurt by a pedestrian with a drink in their hand?  The violation of our civil rights, as you can see, is motivated not only by a sense of superiority and arrogance with regard to the rule of law, but by simple greed, as well.And CruiserTwelve; thank you for your comments, but there is a very good reason to use plastic cups at times.  Sometimes, even classy places will run out of glasses before they run out of customers.  During these events, there are as many as 10 times as many people roaming around downtown as usual.  Most places will keep plastic cups on hand just in case.Thank You All.Roger Di CiccioRed Rock Saloon.
 
2013-03-03 02:45:53 PM  

rogerd: First of all, I want to thank all of you for commenting and/or supporting our position in this issue.


Questions: How much does a permit cost, and does the police department receive that money? I'm assuming they're talking about some kind of special event license.

Do you have a business association that can meet with the FMPD administration and talk about this issue?  It sounds like there's likely a solution that is mutually beneficial.
 
2013-03-03 02:50:42 PM  
The permit itself only costs a few hundred dollars, but the additional fees that go to the FMPD can be whatever the FMPD says, so there is no limit, usually the amount is around $10,000.   The business association has tried unsuccessfully to solve the problem both with the FMPD and the CIty Council.
 
2013-03-03 11:06:45 PM  

rogerd: The permit itself only costs a few hundred dollars, but the additional fees that go to the FMPD can be whatever the FMPD says, so there is no limit, usually the amount is around $10,000.   The business association has tried unsuccessfully to solve the problem both with the FMPD and the CIty Council.


I'm assuming, based on how things are where I work, that the license fee goes to the state liquor licensing board for a special use permit allowing a variance to your existing license. I'm also going to assume that this event is sponsored by your business association and is allowed under a permit from the city. Does that permit require that your association hire a certain number of officers? This is usually based on the number of anticipated attendees for the event. Have there been issues related to alcohol in the past?

I'm just having a problem with the cops basically forcing this event to end when they seem to be benefitting from it. The city is also benefitting from it as a result of the increased taxes paid by the attendees. I'm just having a hard time digesting this unless there have been serious crime issues resulting from the event.
 
2013-03-04 10:31:47 AM  
In 4 years total of having the event with no permit (no street closure is necessary so no permit is required) there have been no problems whatsoever related to alcohol or otherwise.

Permits are all issued by the city.  There is no wording in the code (for event permitting) that specifies any minimum or maximum number of police officers for any permits.  There is simply verbiage that cites "billable costs" which invariably end up being a pot of free money for the FMPD.
 
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