MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - Police continue their search for the gunman who, officials said, shot a man and a woman near the entrance of an iconic high-end hotel, in the mid-beach area of Miami Beach.
The Fontainebleau Miami Beach, near 44th Street and Collins Avenue, is open and operating, one day after police responded to the scene of the shooting, Sunday night. “We received multiple 911 calls just before 9 o’clock, indicating that there was a shooting along the departure ramp,” said Miami Beach Police Officer Ernesto Rodriguez.
According to investigators, the subject opened fire on the hotel’s valet ramp, striking the victims. “As soon as the officers arrived, they located two gunshot wound victims, a female who sustained one gunshot wound and a male who sustained several gunshot wounds,” said Rodriguez.
Officials said the shooter, dressed in all-dark clothing, took off running. “A potential black male subject fled the scene, just after the shooting, on foot,” said Rodriguez.
According to the incident report, a witness saw the subject trying to get into a taxi cab, but it was already occupied.
Investigators said the male victim, later identified as 33-year-old Victor Young Jr., had gotten into a fight with the shooter. Detectives believe the female victim, 27-year-old Mona Founceha, had nothing to do with the altercation.
Shocked hotel guests said they heard all of the gunshots. “I heard the shots, went outside and looked and see everyone running around,” an unnamed man said. “It was quick, ’cause it wasn’t like ‘pop, pop.’ It was like ‘pop, pop, pop, pop, pop, pop.'”
Police said the victims ran through the hotel before police and rescue crews arrived, turning the lobby into a crime scene. A 7News viewer took photographs of the interiors cordoned off by crime scene tape.
Videos posted to social media captured the aftermath of the shooting.
Paramedics rushed both patients to Ryder Trauma Center. Young was listed in critical condition, but has since been downgraded to stable condition. Founceha remains at the hospital in stable condition.
7News cameras captured rescue crews taking the victims into the hospital.
The Fontainebleau’s president and COO, Philip Goldfarb, released a statement, Monday afternoon, which read:
“An unfortunate incident occurred last night at Fontainebleau’s Departures Drive. The hotel’s security and management team responded immediately and is assisting the Miami Beach Police during the ongoing investigation.”
Meanwhile, back at the scene of the shooting, a police helicopter flew overhead while investigators searched for clues. “We’ve enlisted the assistance of Miami-Dade [Police] Aviation, as well as our partners in the City of Miami [Police’s] K-9 unit,” said Rodriguez.
“They shut down the street. They shut everything down,” said the unnamed male hotel guest.
“We’re working closely, not only with the Fontainebleau security staff but also the hotels along [Collins Avenue] as well, to ensure everyone’s safety,” said Rodriguez.
“We come from somewhere where that happens all the time,” said hotel guest Heaven Matthews, who is visiting from Boston. “You know, so, we come out here for peace of mind, and we didn’t even get that.”
“I’m all the way from Connecticut, and I feel like we should have had, like, some peace,” said visitor Catherine Gonzales.
The gunman remains at large. “We want everyone, obviously, to be cognizant of their surroundings. If anything seems out of place, immediately contact police,” said Rodriguez.
If you have any information on this shooting, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $1,000 reward.
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