NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, FLA. (WSVN) - Two Miami-Dade Police officers fired their weapons at an alleged car thief in the middle of a busy Northwest Miami-Dade roadway, Monday afternoon, killing the suspect, according to officials.
Miami-Dade police cruisers, as well as undercover detectives, pulled up behind the suspect’s vehicle as it sat in traffic at 183rd Street and Northwest 57th Avenue, around 1 p.m. Miami-Dade police surrounded the driver, who was in a stolen Volkswagen Tiguan, and ordered him to get out. The man refused to exit the vehicle and pulled out a machete, according to MDPD. That’s when shots were fired.
“Police officers approached a vehicle that had been stolen from a local car dealership, and the individual was not compliant,” said John Rivera with the Miami-Dade Police Benevolent Association. “When they went to approach him, he brandished a very deadly weapon. It was something that looked a little bit like a medieval-looking serrated kind of a sword or a knife of some sort, but I haven’t seen it, so it’s hard for me to describe it. It was one where the officers felt in fear of their lives.”
The suspect was transported via ambulance after being shot several times by police. One witness said the man appeared to die on the scene, as CPR was performed on him.
“They were trying to revive the guy,” Jasmine De La Sierra said. “They were doing CPR on him. I’m guessing that didn’t work because they stopped.”
Witnesses told 7News that police told the man but he man stayed inside the car and did not comply with any of the commands officers gave him.
“That white car with the dealer thing was coming to the light and that Miami-Dade police car chasing him,” Jackie Machado, who witnessed the shooting from nearby, said. “Police come, like five or six police, they tell the guy in the drivers side, ‘Get out of the car,’ and he don’t obey. They pulled the little baton, and they broke the window. When he open the door, they shoot at him. But the guy never shoot the police back.”
A witness, who was parked just in front of the VW in traffic, recorded cell phone video. Shots could be heard ringing out from the video.
According to the Police Benevolent Association, at least two officers fired their weapons. Some sort of yelling could also be heard in the video witnesses recorded as officers began to approach the suspect’s vehicle.
The video shows police officers and detectives trying to make contact with the driver. Officers then began smashing the windows on each side of the car with batons.
The cell phone video shows when one officer was able to get in the car; he leaned inside, then multiple shots are heard as the officers flee from the car.
“At that time, the subject produced a machete and began making verbal threats at the officers, when shots were fired,” MDPD Detective Robin Pinkard said.
“Next thing you know, about eight, seven rounds of shots going off,” De La Sierra, a witness, said. “I think the cops did a good job, and I think they did the right thing.”
The suspect died on the way to the hospital. Their name has not been released.
The two officers who fired their weapons have been placed on administrative leave as is customary during investigations into police-involved shootings. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating.
FDLE and Miami-Dade police were on the scene, as well as school board police, due to the close proximity of the shooting to schools. School officials confirmed their officers were not involved in the shooting. School board officials never issued lockdowns for any of the nearby schools.
“We go through the routine. FDLE is here doing their investigation, and we’re OK with all of that,” Rivera said.
According to officials, the car was stolen from the Esserman International Volkswagen that is located down the street from the scene.
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