Key Biscayne Police arrested four juvenile males and charged them with the armed robbery of two Key Biscayne boys. A fifth suspect, an adult, is being pursued by police, Police Chief Frank Sousa said Thursday.
Police said the investigation led to an address in South Miami, where officials located two stolen vehicles. Officers attempted a traffic stop when the subjects got into cars, but then the subjects fled on foot. Two firearms were recovered.
The defendants are charged with armed robbery with a mask, burglary, and grand theft. They were taken to the Miami-Dade Juvenile Assessment Center.
Sousa said the big break came when the suspects allegedly used stolen cars that were recorded by a gas station camera. He said one of the cars, a silver Nissan Sentra, was the same one that drove up to the Key Biscayne teens on East Enid Drive. The boys’ families earlier said the suspects pointed guns at them and demanded their smartphones early Monday morning.
Sousa said there is no evidence that any of the suspects had any connection to Key Biscayne.
“This is not where they intended to come,” he said. “They took a wrong turn.” The four ranged in age from 15 to 17.
The incident rattled the island community and dominated Tuesday’s Village Council meeting, where residents asked for better street lighting and video surveillance.
Sousa said video from island residents and data from a license plate reader at the Village entrance helped solve the case. He also praised the work of investigators, who he said worked more than 30 hours straight.
“This is a demonstration of how effective having your own police department and your own investigators is,” Sousa said. “It speaks to the work ethic of our officers.”
Sousa said the case was being reviewed to determine whether the youths would be charged as adults, a decision that falls to the State Attorney’s Office.
Editor’s Note: The Key Biscayne Independent does not identify juvenile defendants except in cases where prosecutors decide to charge juveniles as adults.
Tony Winton is the editor-in-chief of the Key Biscayne Independent and president of Miami Fourth Estate, Inc. He worked previously at The Associated Press for three decades winning multiple Edward R. Murrow awards. He was president of the News Media Guild, a journalism union, for 10 years. Born in Chicago, he is a graduate of Columbia University. His interests are photography and technology, sailing, cooking, and science fiction.