By Gary Nelson

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – North Miami Beach police believe a botched robbery may have ended with a man, waiting to start his work day, being shot and killed.

Police were called to NE 163rd St. and 21st Avenue about 6 a.m., after reports of shots being fired. They found a man lying dead in the street, having been shot multiple times.

“At this time we believe it was a failed robbery attempt, however it’s still a preliminary investigation and we’re still trying to gather more facts as to what exactly occurred,” said North Miami Beach Police Captain Juan Pinillos.

The victim, according to a manager for the company Power Design, was an electrician and he was standing around with several coworkers waiting to start the day on an apartment building going up on 164th Street when they were set upon.

“It’s disgusting. You’re trying to earn a living out here, you were waiting to start your day and you’re ambushed. It’s a cowardly act,“ Pinillos said.

The killing came in an area of North Miami Beach on an economic rebound, as the new apartment building construction would indicate. It is not a neighborhood known for violent crime, but residents say they always have to have an eye out.

“There are so many people, weird people walking around here, you don’t feel safe. It’s not like you have to be afraid all the time, but you have to be careful,“ said neighborhood resident Wilton Paniagua.

Homicide investigators worked long into the day. The lone gunman, for whom there is only a sketchy description, took off on foot.

By noon, Police had not identified the murder victim, saying next of kin had not been fully notified.

The shooting occurred on a main drag, 163rd Street is a busy thoroughfare. Police believe a passing motorist might have possibly seen the gunman run to a waiting vehicle or dwelling.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (305) 471-TIPS.


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