CORAL GABLES (CBSMiami) – New details are emerging about the Coral Gables armed robbery that set off a chain reaction that ended in a deadly shootout in the next county over.
The robbery happened around 4:14 in the afternoon, where two gunman held up the Regent Jeweler’s store on Coral Gables’ famed Miracle Mile.
CBS4’s David Sutta learned the thieves were after diamonds and may have cased the store, knowing exactly what they wanted.
The store set off their silent alarm, which alerted police.
“Officers responded within a minute and half. Within that minute and half the subjects exchanged gunfire with the proprietor who also fired back,” said Coral Gables Police Chief Ed Hudak.
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A female store employee was shot in the exchange.
The thieves got away as bullets flew in the back alley of the store.
“We heard in the back alley about 8 to 10 rounds fired,” said witness Carlos Villanueva.
One of the bullets traveled across Le Jeune into city hall. A bullet hit a window at the city clerk’s office.
Just minutes later, a report of a carjacking came in.
A mile away on Mariana Avenue, the gunmen ditched their getaway car, a U-Haul van, on this quiet suburban neighborhood.
A UPS delivery truck became their next target, taking driver Frank Ordonez hostage.
“At that point, at gunpoint, they abducted a UPS truck and the driver,” said Hudak.
From there the wild chase continued all the way into Broward County.
Twenty-three miles later and roughly an hour after the carjacking, it all ended in a shootout.
“This is what dangerous people will do. This is what people will do to avoid capture. If people give up and are held accountable for their crimes then we wouldn’t put this many people in danger.”
Detectives now combing over the scene, piecing together the details of what transpired, and how it ended so tragically for a kidnapped UPS employee and an innocent bystander.
“It’s difficult for all of us, not just law enforcement, but society, instead of just giving up they chose to do this,” Hudak said.