He did not tip the bartender, and that led to his arrest


(CNN) – A bartender from Key West who saw pictures of the men who had vandalized the Florida city landmark on New Year’s Day recognized one of them: It was the bartender who had stiffened him the night before.

Key West police released this photo showing the damage to the Southernmost Point landmark.

Cameron Briody’s recall of the face and his bar’s receipts helped police identify the two men suspected of destroying the famous “Southernmost Point” buoy brand.

The heavily painted 20-ton concrete buoy marking the southernmost point of the continental United States suffered “extensive damage” when a Christmas tree was placed near it and set on fire, according to Key West police.

Surveillance camera footage captured two men dragging the tree to the buoy and setting it on fire around 6 p.m. 3 New Year’s Day. At times, the men ducked behind the buoy while vehicles drove past, according to the police report. When the fire burned, the two took pictures with their phones and then ran off.

News quickly spread in the dense island community as images of the crime were shared on social media.

When Briody scanned the news the morning after his busy New Year’s Eve party at Irish Kevin’s Bar, Briody realized he had seen one of the men the night before. The patron kept in mind because he had ordered three rounds of drinks and did not tip for any of them.

“I knew right away that I had served him and that he had used a card so his name would be on the banknotes,” Briody told the Miami Herald.

He called his manager, Daylin Starks, who quickly found the credit card receipt for the man’s transactions. She then used the timestamp to match it with the bar’s video of the patron and his companion.

“We could follow them all the time, in and out of the bar,” Starks told the Herald. “We could see them being rejected from all the girls they were trying to beat up.”

The suspects were wearing the same clothes as seen in the video from the buoy.

Police were able to use the information to identify a 22-year-old man from Florida and a 21-year-old man from Texas. They contacted both men, who acknowledged what they were doing and said they had made a big mistake, according to the report. They are charged with crimes with damages of more than $ 1,000.

Repairs to the buoy, which was installed in 1983, cost more than $ 5,000, according to the police report. Key West Public Works began repairing landmarks the same day and completed the restoration on Thursday.

To help identify the suspects, Briody was rewarded with a box of rum provided by Key West First Legal Rum Distillery.

“We are extremely proud of Cameron, the Key West Police Department and everyone else who took part in naming these suspects,” said a Facebook post from Irishman Kevin’s. “We are also pleased that those responsible for vandalizing a city landmark that is so close and dear to so many will have to take responsibility for their actions.”

The-CNN-Wire
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