3 in custody after boat chase, police-involved shooting
SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, Fla. (WSVN) -- Three men accused of leading police on a boat chase and firing at officers are in custody.
The incident started at about 1 a.m. Thursday at 74th Avenue and Southwest Eighth Street. Investigators said, an officer was in his home when he heard gunfire. He notified police, and helicopter crews were called in. Helicopters spotted a small boat with three passengers in the canal and when ground officers closed in on them, they started to flee.
Detectives said the subjects in the boat in the Snapper Creek Canal then began firing at the officers who were driving parallel on the road. Officers returned fire.
When the subjects realized they were surrounded, they stopped the boat at Southwest 112th Avenue and Snapper Creek Drive.
After giving up, one of the subjects grabbed something out of the boat, put it in the ground and then stepped on it before fully surrendering to police.
Crime Scene Investigators found a weapon on the boat. Underwater recovery teams searched the canal for clues all day, but police have not specified what exactly they were looking for.
No one was injured during the exchange of gunfire. One subject suffered a gash on his forehead but it said to be non-life threatening. "None of our officers were injured, thankfully," said Miami-Dade Police Lieutenant Rosanna Cordero-Stutz. "One of the subjects did receive a minor injury. It is unknown at this time if this was a possible graze wound or not."
One woman who lives in the area was shocked by the bizarre chase. "Oh, my God. This is unbelievable. I can't believe this happened here," said Olivia Alfaro.
Police took all three males, in their 20s, into custody. They also confiscated their dinghy, which had a flag with a scull and crossed bones on its stern.
This is the sixth police-involved shooting since Aug. 1. Just six days ago, on the 24th, a police pursuit across Miami-Dade County ended in Miami Gardens after shots were fired. Four suspects in that incident were taken into custody. "Our police officers are lucky again not to see another police officer dead," said Police Benevolent Association President John Rivera.
Authorities are trying to determine what the subjects were doing in the canal and why they fled from police. "We don't know what the mentality was or what they were doing out here," said Cordero-Stutz.
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