Saturday, April 14, 2012

Miami pulls ultimate dick move to prevent Bookville II camp

Miami has been in the news lately for the new sex offender camp at Shorecrest. They are already trying to sue the state, but the came up with an even better idea-- to create a makeshift park to prevent RSOs from moving in. Check out these pictures from the park-- would you send YOUR kids there to play? I bet even Lenore Skenazy from Free-Range Kids would be reluctant to let her kids play there.

I'm willing to guess the "little river" is a drainage ditch. I guess there ARE rednecks in Miami after all.

I've seen inner city parks better than this.


Miami creates pop-up park to stanch flow of sex offenders to Shorecrest sidewalk  
With sex offenders on a Shorecrest sidewalk, Miami opened a new park just a few hundred feet away to stop more from showing up.

BY CHARLES RABIN
CRABIN@MIAMIHERALD.COM

Only a few hundred feet from the latest encampment of sexual offenders, who were banished to a sidewalk in Miami’s Shorecrest neighborhood, is a little piece of mostly barren city-owned land, about 100-by-40 feet, filled with a couple of old rusted toys and a metal carport frame.

Welcome to Miami’s new “Little River Pocket Park,’’ a sod-challenged pop-up park never envisioned in any master plan, but created by City Commissioner Marc Sarnoff in a clever bid to keep more offenders from moving to the area.

“I can’t dislodge those who are there,’’ Sarnoff, who represents the district, told The Miami Herald. “But this is to prevent any further sexual offenders from being put there by the state.”

Sarnoff learned of the vacant land from nearby homeowners concerned about at least 13 sexual offenders who have set up camp nearby. County and state law prohibit sex offenders from living near parks where children gather, though the state allows offenders already living somewhere to stay if the park is created after they’ve moved in, the city said.

The new park, at the southern end of Northeast 10th Avenue on the Little River, is about 300 feet from the relatively new encampment of sex offenders, who gather at 10 every night on a small piece of sidewalk just north of the park near 79th Street, and who generally leave before dawn.

The restrictive county law doesn’t allow offenders within 2,500 feet of schools or any place children might gather, leaving the men few places in Miami-Dade County where they can spend evenings.

Several of the men told The Miami Herald that their probation officers handed them pieces of paper suggesting they go to Shorecrest after they were released from prison. State correction officials deny that, saying they can only tell released inmates where they are not allowed to live.

Either way, the group has been at the spot for several months now, prompting Sarnoff to take action.

In March, commissioners voted to take legal action demanding that corrections stop the men from congregating in Shorecrest, a neighborhood in the city’s northeast corner. Nothing has been filed yet.

The city seems to have met the minimum requirements to create a park. Deputy City Attorney Maria Chiaro said the city has to declare the spot a park, then maintain it. At Sarnoff’s request, City Manager Johnny Martinez wrote Maria DiBernardo, the state corrections circuit administrator, two weeks ago to inform her of the new park.

“This new park should necessarily preclude the placement of any sex offenders in the area of 79th Street and 10th Avenue,’’ the letter said.

Corrections officials did not respond to requests for comment.

Sarnoff tried a similar tactic almost three years ago to remove about 100 sexual offenders who made national headlines when they created an encampment under the Julia Tuttle Causeway.

Back then, he had the city manager write Gov. Charlie Crist demanding the offenders be moved because a spoil island named Picnic Island #4 was only 1,200 feet from the encampment, which was inside the county’s 2,500-foot boundary.

But the attempt backfired when state officials argued that the island was neglected, children didn’t congregate there, and was well outside the less-restrictive, 1,000-foot limit required by state statute.

Like Picnic Island #4, Little River Pocket Park could use some work.

Its front entrance, where 10th Avenue turns to the east, is protected by a two-foot-high steel rail that prohibits entry. Just over the rail is a sewer grate surrounded by mounds of mud. The park could benefit from plenty of new sod. There’s a giant, old ficus tree that has seen better days, the carport frame and two kids’ riding toys — a plastic horse and dinosaur on large coils.

The neglected property was brought to Sarnoff’s attention by Shorecrest homeowners who said they were upset the commissioner had ignored their pleas to open up several water-access points that had either fallen into disrepair over the years, or had been taken over by adjacent property owners.

Whatever the reason for creating the new park, Shorecrest resident Richard Laird, who has an 8-year-old son named Jack, is glad the property is now open to the public. Even better, he said, “It stems the growth of the sex offenders.’’

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the news article. Florida's been dealing with the issues of their strict laws for years now, maybe they should loosen the laws or find a more permanent solution for these people.

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    ReplyDelete