MIRAMAR (CBSMiami) – The family of the innocent bystander killed in that police shootout in Miramar on December 5th has hired the Morgan & Morgan law firm to try to get some answers.
On Tuesday, three lawyers from the firm took questions from the media in Miami.READ MORE: Facing South Florida: 1-On-1 With Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava
“We are trying to piece together what happened and what went wrong,” said lead attorney Matt Morgan.
Morgan represents the family of 70-year-old Richard Cutshaw, who was killed in his car during the gun battle.
“There was a failure that led to the death of Richard Cutshaw,” Morgan said. “Bullets sprayed across the intersection as if it was a war zone.”
Cutshaw died along with hijacked UPS driver Frank Ordonez after a 23-mile pursuit that began in Coral Gables and ended at the intersection of the Miramar Parkway and Flamingo Road during rush hour.
Cellphone cameras captured dozens of gun shots and showed police officers taking cover behind cars where drivers were struck in traffic.
Cutshaw’s family released a statement on Friday:
“What happened to Richard is a tragedy that no other family should have to bear He was sitting in his car on his way from a job he loved, when the intersection around him erupted into a war zone. We cannot make sense of what happened to him; it’s unfathomable.
“Rick was a beloved son, brother, uncle, godfather and friend. He worked tirelessly his entire life trying to make lives better for the thousands of people he represented through the United Food and Commercial Workers Union in Florida, and currently as a field representative for the Government Supervisors Association of Florida (OPEIU/Local-100 AFL-CIO).
“His work wasn’t done; at age 70 he still hadn’t retired. We think he would have missed the interaction with the staff and members of the Local greatly. Sadly, we will no longer see his smile, hear his laughter, roll our eyes at his jokes, or see the playfulness that he always displayed. Our hearts are broken not only for our family but for that of Frank Ordonez as well.”READ MORE: Miami Gardens Faith Leaders, Officials & Community Members Come Together To Remember Lives Lost To Gun Violence
Ordonez was buried last week. His heartbroken family has also hired an attorney on his behalf.
The chase began after a jewelry store robbery in Coral Gables, where a woman was struck in the head by a ricocheting bullet.
Authorities said 41-year-old cousins Lamar Alexander and Ronnie Jerome Hill fled the store, hijacked Ordonez’s UPS truck and led police on a chase on I-75.
When the truck exited the interstate, it got stuck in traffic at a busy Miramar intersection where the shootout took place.
Both suspects died at n the shootout along with Ordonez and Cutshaw.
“Our hearts go out to the Cutshaw family and Richard’s friends across the community,” said Cutshaw family attorney Adrian Mendiondo from the Morgan & Morgan law firm. “We have been asked to help them find answers to what happened, and why. They deserve a comprehensive investigation into the sequence of events that led to his death.”
Mendiondo then called on the community to help share any information to authorities and the law firm.
“We ask anyone who has any information, photographs, or audio or video records to provide those records to the investigators, and to us,” Mendiondo said. “We need to make sure this incident is not overlooked or swept under the rug. It is a miracle that only two innocent persons were killed, and we have promised Richard’s family that we will do everything in our power to hold those responsible accountable.”
Mendiondo said they will be dissecting the police pursuit.
“Two people got killed who shouldn’t have gotten killed,” Mendiondo said.MORE NEWS: Orange County Officials Searching For 19-Year-Old Miya Marcano
A memorial service for Cutshaw is planned for Wednesday in Hollywood 2 p.m. at the Serrano Funeral Home.