Dec. 20 (UPI) — The Florida Department of Law Enforcement has revealed that nearly 200 bullets were fired by 21 police officers and two robbery suspects during this month’s shootout that left four people dead, including the suspects.
The findings were revealed Wednesday in a preliminary report into the Dec. 5 shooting that followed the armed suspects robbing a jewelry store and then hijacking a UPS vehicle and taking its driver hostage.
The suspects then led police on a 20-mile high-speed chase that came to an end at a Miramar intersection, about 20 miles north of Miami, in a hail of gunfire.
“We have an obligation to the community and we also have an obligation to the law enforcement agencies that are involved,” FDLE Special Agent Troy Walker said during a roundtable discussion with members of the Miami-Dade County Community Relations Board.
He said 195 rounds were recovered from the scene and the officers involved will now have to explain what threat they perceived they were under and justify discharging their firearms.
The investigation will be thorough and not be concluded soon, Walker said.
“We are not going to cut any corners whatsoever,” he said during the meeting. “So, whatever time it takes for us to do that, that’s what we’re going to do because we owe it to you all.”
UPS driver Frank Ordonez, bystander Richard Steven Cutshaw who was waiting at the intersection and the two suspects were killed in the shooting. Walker said autopsies have been performed on the bodies and some details were told to their families.
He said it is unclear if either victim was killed by bullets shot by police or the suspects.
“That’s part of the forensics,” he said. “That’s part of the examination.”
He said they have thousands of hours of footage obtained from police body cameras and other sources at the scene that investigators will go over as part of their investigation.
“We have our work cut out for us,” Walk said. “I can’t stress it enough: Be patient with us through this process.”