7 people arrested while feeding homeless in Tampa

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) – Tampa police say they arrested seven people from a group that was serving food to the homeless without a permit.

Police spokesman Steve Hegarty says some 30 to 40 people with signs that read “Food not Bombs” gathered in Gaslight Park Saturday afternoon to distribute food. He says officers explained that city ordinances prohibit food distribution without proper permitting.

The officers offered alternatives to distribute food in another location but they continued setting up tables. Hegarty says they were told they’d be arrested if they continued distributing food. Seven people refused to stop and were arrested.

They were given notices to appear in court on misdemeanor charges.

Hegarty says officers told the group last week they’d need a permit but they chose to violate a city ordinance.

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