MIAMI BEACH (CBS4) – An alleged robbery attempt led to a SWAT standoff at a popular Miami Beach restaurant. In the end, four people were taken into custody and some restaurant patrons had quite a story to tell.
It began just before midnight when callers to 911 reported seeing three individuals wearing ski masks get out of a car and walk towards a Shell gas station on 71st Street, according to Miami Beach police.READ MORE: Convicted Killer Dayonte Resiles Sentenced To Life In Murder Of Jill Halliburton Su
Justin Ramos was working the night shift at the station.
“Once the customers left, I came back inside and saw him putting the ski mask on,” said Ramos.
“Once they were about to walk in with the guns and everything, that’s when the cops came and he dropped the gun right there,” said Ramos point to a spot on the ground.
Police found two of the masked individuals near the rear of the station, a third sitting in the car. They have been identified as 18-year old Ralph Carr, 18-year old Theon Johnson and 16-year old Gregory Oliver.
The fourth person, identified as 16-year old Andrew Jones, reportedly took off across a municipal parking lot with police on his heels.
READ MORE: Coral Springs Police: 3 Separate Crime Scene Tied To One Suspect
Police said Jones ended up two blocks over on the roof of Manolo’s restaurant located at 73rd Street and Collins Avenue. A security camera inside the restaurant captured his movements. A restaurant employee who was watching the surveillance monitor was able to tell police where Jones was attempting to hide.
A SWAT team went into the restaurant and told everyone to flip their tables over and hit the ground.
“We stacked the chairs up and the tables were like a shield, I guess, and were all flat on the ground,” said Magali Zabalegui.
Police said Jones had torn open the air conditioning cover on the roof, gained access to the restaurant’s crawl space and was trying to hide in the ventilation duct. Unfortunately, he got stuck. Jones was freed and taken into custody.
Miami Beach police said they recovered three hand guns from the subjects and several unspent bullets from the municipal lot. Some witnesses said they heard gun shots during the incident, but Miami Beach police said not of their officers fired their weapons.
All four have been charged with attempted armed robbery. Carr was additionally charged with carrying a concealed weapon. Additional charges leveled against Jones include burglary, criminal mischief and resisting arrest without violence.MORE NEWS: School Bus Driver Accused Of Molesting 7-Year-Old Girl In Mami-Dade
But that may not be the end of the charges for three of them. During questioning police said Carr, Oliver and Johnson confessed to committing a previous robbery in Miami.