MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) – Some people say no publicity is bad publicity, but there are exceptions to that.

South Beach’s image is taking a beating, and that can pose a huge problem when your economy depends on the tourists that want to come here.

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A promotional video from Visit Florida from 2017 shows its beautiful beaches and glamorous lifestyle, along with the fine dining and fun nightlife.

That atmosphere changed a few weeks ago when thousands of spring breakers descended on South Beach. Large crowds, fighting, and even gunfire have put Miami Beach in the spotlight for all of the wrong reasons.

That message rang true in Connecticut, with its governor issuing a warning to residents planning a trip to South Florida.

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“Watch out for Miami Beach. I see a lot of spring events going on down there,” Gov. Ned Lamont. “And make sure if you went down there, don’t go.”

Among the stern warnings come the grim reminders of what’s happened throughout much of South Beach.

Just type “Miami Beach” into a Google news search and among the top results are the following:

  • From NBC News: Spring Breakers Accused Of Drugging And Raping A Woman Who Later Died In Miami Beach
  • From The Associated Press: Miami’s South Beach Confronts A Disastrous Spring Break
  • From The New York Times: Miami Beach Overwhelmed By Spring Break, Extends Curfew

That list continues to grow by the hour.

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Safety officials throughout the city warn it may be quite some time before South Beach is once again remembered in a positive light.

CBSMiami.com Team