Never stiff your bartender.
That’s the lesson from how police were able to find and arrest the hooligans who burned Key West’s famous Southernmost Point landmark in the early hours of New Year’s Day.
Denizens of the Conch Republic awoke at the first of the year to discover their famous landmark scorched. Two men were caught on video setting fire to Christmas trees at the base of the colorful concrete buoy, which celebrates Key West as the southernmost tip of the Continental United States. The fire cost $5,000 to repair.
Bartender Cameron Briody, who works at Irish Kevin’s on Duval Street, Key West’s equivalent of Bourbon Street, saw the video and remembered seeing the two men in his saloon that night.
Because they had failed to tip their servers. Yep, bartenders notice such things.
The bar’s manager pulled the video clips from the “tons of cameras” in the watering hole, time stamped them, matched them with credit card receipts, and the culprits were identified. They’ve now turned themselves into the police.
It is unknown how their punishment will be adjudicated, although this being Key West walking the plank may not be out of the question.
STRANGE FACT: Cuba is 90 miles due south of the Southernmost Point buoy, situated 18 feet above sea level and weighing 20 tons. It was erected in 1983 to replace the small wooden signs that used to mark the location. Why? Because people kept stealing them.