It took place on Saturday, June 18 on Blackwater Street in the watercolor community, and attendees staged boxing matches amidst expensive furniture and art, the sheriff’s office said in a news release. The lakeside area is about 130 miles southwest of Tallahassee.
Detectives say no arrests have been announced, but videos posted on social media showed dozens of campaigners circulating in the area.
“An open house party is against the law. An open house party in the house you break into is a theft,” the sheriff’s office said in the release.
A noise complaint early Saturday alerted officials to the break-in, but by the time the delegates arrived, most were present, officials said.
“Since then, videos with some highlights have been circulating on Snapchat, Instagram and other social media platforms. This includes where some of the participants turn the foyer of an $8 million home into a boxing ring,” the sheriff’s office said.
“Apart from damage and stolen items, this is a complete infringement of someone’s home that you can’t put a price on. When someone you know has gone into your wardrobe, tried on your clothes, and used your bathroom, it feels like there isn’t a dollar amount attached to it. Especially in a place where you’re supposed to feel safe.”
Investigators did not provide an estimate of damage or a list of items taken from the home.
The sheriff’s office said videos and photographs recorded during the incident were being used as evidence. Several have been posted on social media by the sheriff’s office, with the hope that attendees will turn themselves in or be recognized by tipsters.
Detectives are also seeking suggestions to identify those who had already circumnavigated the fliers.
The sheriff’s office wrote, “Before anyone says it’s just ‘kids being kids,’ we want you to ask yourself how you would feel if your home was ransacked.”
“Before you say, ‘They probably wouldn’t know,’ ask yourself whether what was happening was appropriate (or legal), even if they were allowed to be there (which they didn’t). Before making excuses, ask why they felt they could do it in the first place.”