PEMBROKE PINES, Fla. - Police in South Florida descended on what they thought was an armed break-in at a men’s clothing store Tuesday morning after people were spotted storming in with rifles — but officers arrived to find a music video filming, all with the store owners’ knowledge.
The guns were not real and the men holding them were actors in a video, said Amanda Conwell, a spokeswoman for the Pembroke Pines Police Department.
The music video was being filmed inside the men’s clothing and accessories store with a film crew while the larger shopping center was closed, The Miami Herald reported, citing a store manager. The manager said the filming was supposed to take less than an hour.
But a witness saw the events unfolding, and not knowing it was staged, called police, authorities said. The scene being filmed depicted two men with guns entering the store and demanding workers to put money in the bag, according to the news outlet.
Pembroke Pines officials said the city had not given a permit for the filming, and the shopping center’s management team said in a statement that it was also not aware of the video.
“We are extremely disappointed that our guests’ experience and peace of mind were compromised this morning ... and unfortunately proper protocol was not followed in this instance,” property manager Annette Alvarez said in an email obtained by The Herald. “We are very thankful for the Pembroke Pines Police Department’s immediate response and their assistance in expeditiously resolving this unfortunate situation.”
Those involved were not charged because they had permission to be in the store and did not display the fake guns in a threatening manner, Conwell said.
“Officers have determined that the individuals were filming a video using fake guns,” the department posted on Twitter just before 11 a.m. “Access to the shopping plaza is being reopened at this time.”