Crime

Opera Tower shooting probe includes sham credit card operation

 

By DAVID OVALLE dovalle@MiamiHerald.com

Police investigating a triple shooting at a posh Miami condo tower discovered what appears to be a bogus credit card manufacturing operation inside the unit where the bloodshed started.

The revelation sheds some light on the shooting Sunday morning that rattled residents of the bayside Opera Tower, 1750 N. Bayshore Dr.

According to a search warrant filed in Miami-Dade circuit court, Miami detectives found plastic card stock, drivers licenses from multiple states, and machines used to make credit cards. The evidence, found in the blood-soaked condo 8 unit on the 19th floor, was turned over the U.S. Secret Service.

So far, no arrests have been made and authorities have remained tight-lipped about the investigation.

The shooting shocked residents at the luxury building, which boasts 360-degree panoramas of the bay and downtown, with residents reporting a blood-smeared elevators and police closing off parts of the tower.

“We’re still trying to sort out what happened,” said Miami Detective Kenia Reyes, a spokeswoman.

The incident unfolded like this, according to the warrant: On Sunday morning, a man claiming to be a tenant told the front desk that he needed help getting into apartment 1906.

A security guard retrieved an extra key and accompanied the “tenant,” and another man, to the front door.

Oddly, the security guard noted that as he opened the door, the “tenant” stuck his finger over the peep hole. As the guard turned and walked away down the hall, five or six gunshots ran out.

The guard looked back and saw the “tenant,” apparently wounded in the right leg, run to the stairwell. The identity of that man is not clear.

In the lobby, according to the search warrant, officers soon found Shawn Jenkins with gunshot wounds to the lower back and right thigh. They also found a second man in the lobby by the name of Devin Hall, with a bullet wound to the right hand.

A third person, Davon Reeves, 26, was found inside a 30th-story apartment, where he had knocked on the door asking for help. He had a gunshot wound to the stomach and was rushed to Ryder Trauma Center at Jackson Memorial Hospital.

A blood trail led to apartment 1906. A Miami police officer, fearing more people might be inside injured, briefly entered the unit and saw casings and blood inside.

According to the warrant, marijuana was “in plain view” on the living room table. The officer also saw “credit card machines commonly associated with fraud.”

When Miami detective John Rusinque called the woman who leases the apartment, she refused to allow a search of the property. Detectives obtained a search warrant, and later found nine driver licenses from different states, 15 suspected fraudulent credit cards, two checks, bank documents, several printers and plastic stock used to make the cards.

Reeves has been under investigation before for credit card fraud. According to an arrest report, Aventura Police in July pulled over Reeves and another man, Mario Melgare, 26, outside the Aventura Mall as part of a “fraud investigation.”

Reeves provided police with a fake Illinois drivers’ license under the name Adrian Carter. Detectives found fake credit cards and additional fraudulent IDs cards with Melgare’s photo.

Both men were charged with multiple felonies, including credit card forgery and possession of a fictitious driver’s license,

Prosecutors declined to file formal charges and the case was dropped after officers did not show up for pre-trial interviews.

If anyone has information on the case, call Miami’s homicide unit at 305-579-6530 or Miami-Dade CrimeStoppers at 305-471-TIPS.

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