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Versión en español

Dear Mr. Justo Rey

I decided to write to your newspaper to address an issue that concerns all of us in Key Biscayne:

Golf carts stolen taken for joy rides

Apparently this is the latest fun thing to do for youngsters in the key. It is happening more and more often, and this behavior will escalate to worse things if the police don’t do anything about it, and honestly if parents don’t act.

We have an award-winning police department with the leadership and the authority to enforce the existing laws. We as citizens expect them to do so. There are large groups of preteen kids hanging out on most nights, misbehaving, being defiant and disrespectful. Conducting mischievous behavior in our community. Just last night we saw a couple of golf carts, each filled with more kids than it could fit, driven recklessly by minors at dangerous high speeds. Looked around and no police were seen.

These kids are out of control! Stealing at CVS, Winn Dixie, stealing golf carts, vandalizing property, breaking car windows, burning chickee huts at the beach club, egging cars and houses, etc. This is no child’s play! Why are we waiting to do something about it? The key used to be a safe place. A neighborly place! Are we waiting for a tragedy to occur to act? This behavior will only escalate if nothing is done about it!

We already have been their victim. Our brand-new car back window was broken last year, and more recently our neighbor’s golf cart and our own were stolen. We found ours the following day at the Key Colony Plaza shopping center. When we spoke with the police, their answer was that they can’t do anything about it. They said, “People do not want to prosecute, and parents do not want to listen.” Well, I think it is better to stop this earlier, and one prosecution will send a clear and deterrent message that these kinds of illegal activities are not acceptable in our village. This will also stop these kids from getting into more serious crimes in the future.

I realize that publishing this may affect property value in Key Biscayne, but not addressing this escalating issue will only make things worse.

We as a community need to join forces all together in keeping our paradise island as a peaceful, safe and happy place for all to enjoy!

Margarita Perez Llanso