MIAMI BEACH (CBS4)- A man who was shot during the shootout on South Beach during the Memorial Day weekend spoke out about the incident Friday.
Cedrick Perkins, 30, said his life was flashing before his eyes when he discovered he was injured Monday while on South Beach during Urban Beach Weekend.
“I was thinking about my daughter, my family,” he said. “And praying to God to let me live.”Perkins was one of four bystanders shot that morning. Three police officers were also injured that weekend after two separate police-involved shootings in Miami Beach.
One person was also killed in the shooting which was caught on camera. Raymond Herisse, 22, was the man who died in a hail of bullets from a dozen police officers guns.
Police opened fire just before 4:00 a.m. Monday, May 30th, after Herisse reportedly got into an altercation with an officer at 18th Street and Collins Avenue. Miami Beach police said it wasn’t Herisse’s first attempt to strike an officer.
Perkins said he was sitting on the porch of the Dolores Hotel on Miami Beach when he saw a car come barreling down the street
“I observed a car coming up the street with flat tires,” he said. “On the opposite side of the street I see police open fire on this vehicle once it passes the motel. By the time I get up try to make my way into the motel, I feel a burning sensation in my chest. And once I get inside the hotel my shirt was covered in blood. They laid me down on the floor and told me to elevate my feet.”
A gun was reportedly found in Herisse’s car, but police have yet to say if the gun found was fired. Regardless, Perkins believes the bullet that went through his chest was fired by police.
Perkin’s attorney Benjamin Crump said the whole incident was poor judgement.
“It’s just common sense that if you are on one side of the road and you got a crowd of people on the other side of the road, you don’t shoot at a car in the middle,” Crump said. “What’s more dangerous? A car bumping into other cars? Or shooting into a crowd of people? It was just poor judgement.”
Perkins attorney is demanding answers on what happened from Miami Beach police, but hinted they will be filing a lawsuit very soon.
“I want justice to be served,” Perkins said.
Rally Held Friday
Meanwhile, saying ‘enough is enough,’ several community activists gathered a few dozen people for a rally Friday evening in front of Miami Beach City Hall to urge city leaders to end Urban Beach Weekend.
Herb Sosa, who publishes the online magazine Ambiente, is a leading figure to end the unofficial Memorial Day weekend event which draws hundreds of thousands of visitors to South Beach.
In an open letter to Miami Beach Mayor Matti Bower, Sosa writes that the Urban Beach weekend “shows our city as nothing short of a warzone – Filthy streets, a drive by shooting, multiple cars crashed in the process, and total chaos on the streets. This is unacceptable and must be controlled before we totally lose our city, tourism & residents. It is not limited to Ocean Drive or Collins – there isn’t a residential street in South Beach not affected by tons of garbage, crime to our vehicles, excessive noise 24 hours a day, and simply a lack of respect for our community, citizens & property.”
Peter Joseph Tapia has set up a Facebook page is support of the rally and ending the Urban Beach weekend. The page has more than 3,200 ‘Likes’.