Updated: On Sunday evening, UF Student Body President-elect Smith Meyers issued a statement to the Alligator regarding his arrest in Key West over Spring Break. We've published it below in its entirety:
Early in the morning on Tuesday, March 7th, I was involved in an incident with the local police while on Spring Break in Key West. Even though the case is still under review, as the Student Body President-Elect of the University of Florida, I am called to a higher standard. Though imperfect and human, the office I was elected to calls me to be an example to all those I represent. I failed in doing this and offer my sincere apologies to everyone affected by my actions and to all Gators for representing UF in such a negative light. While I am so appreciative of the love and support I have received from everyone during this time, I also recognize that I have let a lot of people down and must work to earn back the trust of those around me. As many people know, I ran on the motto, “character that counts.” This incident, while out of character, undoubtedly contradicts that motto. However, I remain committed to good character and will work to prove it throughout my term. I am fully cooperating with law enforcement to resolve this incident and will be as transparent as possible as this case continues."
Original story below:
UF’s newly elected Student Body president was arrested Tuesday in Key West, Florida, after police said he drunkenly knocked over two Harley-Davidson motorcycles while on Spring Break.
William Smith Meyers, 22, was observed by a witness at about 2 a.m. Tuesday getting on several parked motorcycles in the 400 block of William Street and attempting to turn them on, according to a Monroe County arrest report.
When they wouldn’t start, Meyers got upset and knocked them down onto the roadway, according to the report.
The right-side handlebars of both motorcycles were damaged, and the saddlebags of one motorcycle were scratched, according to the report.
When officers with the Key West Police Department arrived, Meyers was not making sense and appeared to be drunk. The arresting officer wrote, “Meyers was so intoxicated that he did not even recall coming down to Key West for spring break vacation," according to the report.
Asked about knocking down the motorcycles, he told an officer that people don’t know how to ride their bikes, according to the report.
Police arrested Meyers on a charge of criminal mischief and took him to the Monroe County Detention Center, according to the report.
He was released Tuesday afternoon with a $328 bond, according to the jail.
Despite being reportedly drunk in public, Meyers was not arrested on an alcohol-related charge. In an interview with the Gainesville Sun, Key West Police spokesperson Alyson Crean said officers in the island city try to exercise discretion when considering charges against college students who visit for Spring Break.
"We don't want to ruin this kid's life for knocking over a couple of bikes," Crean told the Sun.
When contacted on Wednesday, UF President Kent Fuchs declined to comment on Meyers' arrest.
Meyers was elected to be the next Student Body President on Feb. 22, when he ran with Impact Party unopposed. His executive ticket ran under the tagline, “Character that counts.”
Previously, Meyers was the Student Senate president, elected unanimously Oct. 4, and ended his term Feb. 28, according to Alligator archives.
The UF food and resource economics senior is also a member of UF’s chapter of Alpha Tau Omega.
Meyers and Impact spokesperson Janae Moodie could not be immediately reached for comment.