TAMPA, Fla. – Tampa’s Gasparilla pirate festival draws hundreds of thousands each year and while most enjoy the swashbucklers without incident, some end up in handcuffs.
The Tampa Police Department says there were a total of 18 arrests during Saturday’s event, including two DUI arrests, eight BUI arrests and eight ‘other disturbances’ arrests.
TPD worked with 30 law enforcement agencies to patrol Gasparilla by land, air, and sea.
“I want to thank all of the Tampa police officers who worked to keep paradegoers safe,” said Tampa Police Chief Lee Bercaw. “This event is truly a team effort. I would like to also thank the many law enforcement agencies from around Tampa Bay that assisted in keeping Gasparilla safe for everyone.”
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission says it issued 84 boating warnings and 26 citations, removed eight impaired operators from the water and reported only 1 boating accident investigation during Gasparilla 2024.
Tampa Fire Rescue also had to help a 78-year-old man who fell off of a float. That man was taken to an area hospital and the parade was paused for about 25 minutes. There is no word yet on his condition.