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'Incredibly disappointing': Police respond to reports of maskless crowds at Super Bowl event featuring DJ Steve Aoki in Tampa

'There’s a level of personal responsibility that must be followed or risk getting shut down,' the Tampa Police Department said in a statement.
Credit: Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP
Steve Aoki arrives at GQ's Men of the Year Celebration on Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in West Hollywood, Calif. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Police Department issued a statement after reports people attending a Super Bowl event in Tampa featuring DJ Steve Aoki weren't wearing masks or social distancing Friday night.

TMZ first reported the incident, which took place at the WTR Tampa Pool and Grill inside the Godfrey Waterfront Hotel. 

Video from Snapchat (warning: language) and Facebook (language warning) shows a large crowd gathered and while some people appear to wear masks, many are not. Another video shows Aoki showering champagne into the crowd.

"Scenes from WTR last night and a few other clubs were incredibly disappointing," Tampa Police said in a statement Saturday. "The city spent the better part of a year educating residents on precautions due to the pandemic and have recently put a mask order in place for both the entertainment and event zones to ensure the safety of our residents and visitors to our great City.

When the Governor lifted the capacity restrictions and opened bars, we turned to the tight knit hospitality community to reopen safe & sound but there’s a level of personal responsibility that must be followed or risk getting shut down.”

According to the venue's website, a Super Bowl event featuring Diplo and 50 Cent is scheduled for tonight. Earlier today, Migos was featured during a Super Bowl event at WTR.  

In St. Petersburg, 50 Cent was criticized by Mayor Rick Kriseman for hosting a party Friday night at Albert Whitted Airport. 

The nation's top health officials sounded the alarm this week about the Super Bowl being a potential superspreader event, and they urged people to gather with friends over Zoom, not in crowds. 

“I’m worried about Super Bowl Sunday, quite honestly. People gather, they watch games together. We’ve seen outbreaks already from football parties,” said Rochelle Walensky, head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “So I really do think that we need to watch this and be careful.” 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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