MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Miami Police are asking for the public’s help to find two men considered armed and dangerous.
Detectives have two teenage girls in custody and are hoping they can lead them to the two men. SO FAR they say the girls have not helped them.
Police said it all started as a purse snatching on NW 7th Avenue.
Dozens of officers from Miami, Miami-Dade, Miami Shores and El Portal set up a perimeter as helicopters searched and swept the area near the village of El Portal.
It’s a frightening scenario for some residents.
“It makes me terrified, never anything happening like this. Hopefully, they can find those guys,” said a neighbor who identified himself as ‘Rafael.’
It was a significant show of force as the officers scoured the area for the two suspects.
“The two men believed inside the perimeter are believed to be extremely dangerous and heavily armed,” said Officer Kenia Fallat with Miami Police.
It was just before 6 p.m. Wednesday when officers received a 911 call from a witness who said the suspects confronted a woman who was walking at NW 7th Avenue and 71st Street.
One of the males pulled out a gun and the other threw her on the ground and took her purse.
“We have a good witness who saw the entire incident and gave us a good description of their tag and vehicle and gave a good description of them,” Fallat told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench. “These 2 young men were quite brazen having these two young women with them. This could have taken a turn for the worse. We describe them as being black, in their 20s and they are thin and one man was wearing an orange shirt.”
Police received a good description of the dark gray SUV and followed it to NW 2nd Court and 93rd Street where vehicles surrounded it by police cars.
“When the officers approached the vehicle, when it came to a complete stop, both the front passenger and the driver ran away from the officers. The two inside the car remained. Officers were able to take both women into custody. They have been detained for questioning,” said Fallat.
Police have not said what the relationship was between the suspects and the two women. The females are just 16 and 17 years old and live in the same apartment building in Miami Gardens. Police say they have said they do not know anything about the purse snatching.
SWAT team and K9 officers methodically searched the area for most of the evening. Neighbors were on edge and many were unable to get home because streets were cordoned off.
“The cops showed up and told us to go inside the lock the doors,” said Rafael.
The incident was a traumatic experience for the victim. Fortunately, police said she suffered only minor injuries. Some businesses have surveillance cameras but, so far, there’s no useful tape to release.
Anyone with information is urged to call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at (305) 471- TIPS.