Florida police ran to the scene of what they thought was an active robbery taking place at a local store, but what they discovered were fake guns and actors shooting a music video with the store owner's permission.
The fictitious scene involved two men with guns storming a men’s clothing and accessories store at The Shops at Pembroke Gardens, and demanding workers to put money into a bag, according to the Miami Herald.
A witness, unaware that there was a film crew inside and that the scene was part of a production, called 911, authorities said.
The Pembroke Pines Police Department immediately jumped into action, posting on their Twitter page on Dec. 8 that officers were responding to the area of Pembroke Gardens regarding reports of two armed males in the area. “Residents: Please remain clear of the area until further notice. Police are shutting down access to the shopping plaza at this time,” the post said.
Shortly thereafter, the department posted an update: “Officers have determined that the individuals were filming a video using fake guns. Access to the shopping plaza is being reopened at this time.”
Amanda Conwell, a spokeswoman for the Pembroke Pines Police Department, said 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, the Herald reported.
The city reportedly had not given permission for the video shoot, Pembroke Pines officials said. The shopping center’s management team said in a statement that it was also not aware of the video, the Associated Press reported.
Property manager Annette Alvarez said in an email obtained by the Herald how thankful she was for the Pembroke Pines police's immediate response but appeared troubled by the situation.
“Safety is our top priority at The Shops at Pembroke Gardens. 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,” Alvarez said.
According to the store owner, by the time the first officer arrived, the filming of the music video had wrapped, the AP reported.