HIALEAH, FLA. (WSVN) - The Palmetto Expressway has reopened to traffic hours after, police said, a shooting and a crash on the highway in Hialeah left a man dead, sent another to the hospital.
According to Miami-Dade Police, the incident occurred just north of Okeechobee Road in Hialeah, at around 2:45 p.m., Wednesday.
Hours later, Miami-Dade Police detective Angel Rodriguez provided further details about the incident.
“We take this very personal, so we are not going to stop until we get to the bottom of what happened,” he said.
Police said an altercation occurred between people in a gray/silver Jeep Cherokee and a red sedan, and then someone inside the Jeep began to spray the sedan with bullets.
7SkyForce hovered above the red Nissan Altima showing multiple bullet holes in the hood and front windshield. The vehicle also had front-end damage after the vehicle came to a stop against the expressway wall.
“At this time, we’re looking at every angle to determine what happened in this shooting,” said Rodriguez.
Authorities identified one of the victims as 20-year-old Timothy Starks, who was pronounced dead at the scene.
Investigators said the driver of the Nissan, 20-year-old Dante’ Collins Banks, suffered a gunshot wound to the stomach.
Miami-Dade Fire Rescue crews airlifted the victim to Jackson Memorial Hospital’s Ryder Trauma Center in stable condition.
7News spoke with Banks’ mother who said she was on the phone with her son when someone opened fire at his vehicle.
“My son was OK,” she said. “He was talking. He was just shook up ’cause his friend got shot.”
The reported shooter or shooters remain at large.
Police are searching for the subject or subjects. Investigators searched several vehicles that matched the description provided.
Troopers shut down all northbound lanes on the Palmetto for hours.
Drivers said the traffic congestion was extensive.
“Bad, very bad. Bad, bad, bad, bad, bad,” said a bystander stuck in traffic.
“It’s terrible. I have one hour here going two blocks,” said another bystander in traffic.
The congestion was so pervasive that it spread into residential neighborhoods.
Cellphone video shows what a section of Miami Springs looked like while the expressway was locked down.
The northbound express lanes on the Palmetto reopened a few hours later, but the rest of the northbound lanes did not reopen until just before 11 p.m.
The search for the shooter still continues, and MDPD officials said they are in need of help from the public.
“If you observed the shooting taking place or if you recall any bit of detail, no matter how minor it is, please call our Crime Stoppers tip line with your information and, remember, you can remain anonymous.”
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 reward of up to $5,000.
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