Saturday, January 28, 2012

Gasparilla 2012 May Mean More Arrests in Tampa, Florida

Tampa Bay Criminal Attorney and Former State Prosecutor Melinda Morris of the Morris Law Firm discusses how Tampa’s Gasparilla 2012 could lead to more arrests.


The Gasparilla Pirate Festival is held every January in Tampa, Florida.  Put on by Ye Mystic Krewe of Gasparilla the boat parade, float parade down Bayshore Boulevard in Tampa, and ensuing nighttime party in downtown Tampa and Ybor City celebrates the legend of Jose Gaspar (thus Gasparilla).  Jose Gaspar was supposedly a Spanish Pirate that operated in the waters around Tampa Bay.

The Gasparilla celebration brings over 400,000 people to Tampa to celebrate and imbibe.  City leadership and Tampa law enforcement have stepped up efforts to control party-goers and enforce rules to limit the chaos.

Why This Matters To You:

Tampa Law Enforcement is on high alert during the Gasparilla Festival.  In fact, almost all active duty officers are called on to enforce the law during the celebration weekend.  Increased law enforcement coupled with a party atmosphere and a much larger than usual population in the downtown Tampa and Ybor City areas can lead to a greater number of arrests.

Tampa law enforcement including the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, Tampa Police Department, and Florida Highway Patrol will be on the lookout for the following types of criminal infractions:
  • Driving Under the Influence
  • Public Intoxication
  • Disorderly Conduct
  • Public Urination
  • Assault / Battery
  • Possession of Marijuana
  • Possession of Pills
  • Possession of Cocaine
  • Possession of Paraphanalia

If you have been arrested at Gasparilla:
  1. Don't speak to the police - ask to have an attorney present.
  2. Don't give a written statement – again, ask to have an attorney present.
  3. Contact an attorney immediately.
  4. Collect and document your own evidence.

What To Do Next:

If you have been arrested at Gasparilla 2012 for DUI or other criminal charges in Tampa, contact a local Criminal Defense Lawyer to discuss possible defenses and specific strategies that may exist in your case.  Call the Morris Law Firm at 727-388-4736 to discuss you case directly with an attorney, or fill out our Online Form to be contacted for a Free Initial Consultation.  The Morris Law Firm can help.  Attorney Melinda Morris has specific knowledge and experience in representing driving under the influence offenses and many other criminal matters throughout Hillsborough County the entire Tampa Bay, FL area (St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Tampa, Hillsborough, Pasco, Manatee, Sarasota, Largo, Dunedin and Bradenton).