MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – FIRST ON FOX: Papi Steak, a Miami Beach steakhouse involved in a lawsuit against the city over its emergency spring break curfew order, will not appeal a judge’s decision to quash an injunction against the controversial crackdown.
The curfew requires restaurants to close from midnight to 6 a.m. between Thursday and Sunday, a span that includes a busy spring break weekend local businesses were looking forward to after two years of the COVID-19 pandemic. It came following a pair of shootings in the heart of the South Beach entertainment district that left five people injured earlier this week.
"We were given the opportunity to appeal, and we've chosen not to," a spokesperson for Papi Steak told Fox News Digital Saturday, a day after a Miami-Dade circuit court judge quashed the request. "We respect the city's decision regarding the curfew."
Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said that the city had no choice but to take action after five people were wounded in separate shootings that took place just steps away from police officers, who have been out in increased numbers since mid-February.
"I know Papi, and I like him, and he makes a great steak," he told Fox News Digital. "But we’ve had shootings in that area during these times."
The curfew received mixed reviews from business owners, some of whom told Fox News Digital they were losing tens of thousands of dollars a night – or more. Others said they understood that the city had to do something following the spate in violence, and despite the economic impact, they were supportive of the safety measures.
The Papi Steak lawsuit describes the curfew as "arbitrary" and "impermissibly over-broad" and was seeking an injunction against enforcement south of Fifth Street -- as well as costs for economic losses.
"The curfew is over-broad and is not narrowly tailored to advance a compelling governmental interest because it prohibits activity south of Fifth Street in Miami Beach, which has not had the spring break related crowds and violence sought to be addressed by the curfew," the lawsuit reads. "The curfew is arbitrary and capricious because it seeks to restrict activities over a broad swatch of South Beach without regard to any legitimate governmental need to prohibit travel, assembly, and other constitutionally protected activities throughout the curfew area."
Gelber said city officials and police leaders decided to implement the curfew over a wider area because they were afraid a smaller zone would have resulted in spring breakers relocating to surrounding residential areas, like the neighborhood around Papi Steak, and resulting in similar difficulties.