MIAMI (WSVN) - A family is devastated and a community is reeling after, police said, a 17-year-old male was fatally gunned down in a residential neighborhood in Miami, early Saturday morning.
According to City of Miami Police, the shooting took place in the area of Southwest Fourth Street and 31st Avenue, at around 1 a.m.
“I woke up to the sound of what I thought were firecrackers,” said a neighbor who asked not to be identified or show her face on camera.
That neighbor, a longtime resident, said she is in disbelief about the shooting. “I’ve been here about 18 years, and something like this is just overwhelming,” she said.
Officials said the young victim was rushed to Coral Gables Hospital with a gunshot wound to the back. He was pronounced dead upon arrival.
“I’m in shock, couldn’t believe it,” said area resident Merlis Diaz, who knew the victim.
The teen’s family identified him as Danny Alvarez.
Diaz said Alvarez’s family had been rocked by another tragic loss last year. “The dad of the kid died of a heart attack this past July. I think it was the 17th,” she said, “and now the kid. It’s heartbreaking; it’s very hard.”
Alvarez’s loved ones, too distraught to speak on camera, said the teen was very athletic and a loving person.
“Very quiet, very nice, very friendly,” said Diaz. “It’s hard. It’s very hard.”
Police took to Twitter to ask for the public’s help in finding the shooter.
As investigators work to determine the circumstances behind the shooting and continue to search for the gunman, neighbors are hoping the violence comes to an end. “I walk my dog every night, sometimes at 3 o’clock in the morning, sometimes at 12 o’clock, so I don’t know what I’m going to do,” said Diaz. “I mean, a shooting, close to my house? I think it was at the corner.”
“It gets to us, and then we’re afraid that something might happen to us,” said the neighbor who asked not to be identified.
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 $3,000 reward.
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