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Weak Charges Filed Against Gun-Wielding Man Who Threatened Black Kids on MLK Day as New Video Emerges

Mark Allen Bartlett
Mark Allen Bartlett Miami-Dade Corrections / Twitter
After police arrested the man who appeared in a viral video brandishing a gun at kids on bicycles who were blocking traffic on the Brickell Avenue Bridge on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, some observers say the charges against him are insufficient. And a new video has emerged showing even more hate.

Last night, video captured by a member of the Dream Defenders, a civil rights group, went viral. It shows a man now identified by police as 51-year-old Mark Allen Bartlett of Hollywood Beach holding a handgun at his side while rushing toward the children. Some of the kids scream and run away.

"Get the fuck out of here," Bartlett yells at them. "You fucking losers. You fucking stupid n*****s. You're all fucking dumb-ass fucking n*****s."

An arrest form obtained by New Times from the Miami Police Department shows Bartlett was stopped and preliminarily charged with carrying a concealed firearm — a felony — around 6:30 p.m. Monday.


The form lists Bartlett as "self-employed" and details how police responded to a call "where the driver was armed with a gun and following behind juveniles" in a dark-blue Range Rover. Police spotted him on Biscayne Boulevard just after NE 11th Street and noted he matched witnesses' description of a man who "was involved in a verbal altercation with several juveniles on bicycles who were blocking northbound traffic on Brickell Avenue."

The arrest form goes on to say witnesses described Bartlett as "brandishing a gun in his hand," causing "juveniles to flee with the driver in pursuit."

A felony stop was conducted when cops caught up with the Range Rover. Officers asked Bartlett if he had any weapons. He said yes, and when they searched the vehicle, they found "a black Springfield Armory XD9, which was located in the right front passenger rear pouch loaded, without a holster, and readily accessible to the driver."

Asked if he had a permit to carry the gun, Bartlett said he didn't know he needed one. Cops arrested him.

Later, while in custody, the arrest form says, Bartlett said, "Why am I being arrested when those kids are free to ride around? I did pull out my gun, but I never pointed it at them."

Another video that surfaced just after midnight shows Bartlett telling the young people blocking traffic to "get in front of my car, you fucking piece of shit. N*****s suck, n*****s suck, n*****s suck, n*****s suck," he says over and over again.
On Instagram, Miami Commissioner Keon Hardemon said Bartlett should be hit with more serious charges.

“Assault with a deadly weapon and calling them n——rs sounds like a hate crime to me,” Hardemon wrote. "Mark Bartlett was arrested but his charge doesn’t reflect his assault yet. Let’s see how our States Attorneys Office decides to file charges."

Others echoed that cry.
Others defended Bartlett and took issue with the fact that the kids were blocking traffic.
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Meg O'Connor is a freelance journalist for Miami New Times. She moved to Miami from New York after earning a master's degree in investigative journalism from Columbia University. She previously worked for CNN's Investigative Unit.
Contact: Meg O'Connor