It was Sunday night at the Fontainebleau Hotel, and tourists were mingling with clubgoers ready to dance the night away at Club Liv’s wrap-up party for the hip-hop music festival coming to an end across the bay.
READ MORE: Two shot at Fontainebleau Hotel
That buzz was shattered at 8:49 p.m., as four or five gunshots rang out from a ramp just outside the main entrance of the most famous hotel in Miami Beach. Seconds later, Victor Donte Young Jr., a 33-year-old visiting from Oakland, California, and Mona Founceha, a 27-year-old from Aventura, ran into the hotel lobby, bleeding.
Young, shot several times, was rushed to the hospital in critical condition. Founceha is in stable condition after suffering a single gunshot wound, police said.
The hotel’s lobby and surrounding streets were quickly closed off by police, inconveniencing tourists trying to get in and out of the hotel and others trying to get to Club Liv, which eventually canceled the night’s post-Rolling Loud event.
A day later, police still haven’t said why the man and woman were shot on a ramp between the Tresor Tower and hotel’s main building at 4441 Collins Ave. Police also have refused to say whether the victims were pedestrians or inside a vehicle.
A witness claimed he saw the two men Miami Beach police believe committed the crime. A cab driver parked on Indian Creek Drive just south of the hotel told police he heard the gunshots, and about a minute later saw two men running on the sidewalk and trying to hail a cab.
One of the men, the cabbie told police, tried to get into an occupied taxi. When that didn’t work out, the cab driver said the two men took off running and disappeared along a path, heading east in the 4300 block of Indian Creek Drive.
Attempts to cordon off the immediate area by police failed to trip up the suspects. Traffic was diverted as police searched for the men, and Collins Avenue was closed between 41st and 44th streets.
Miami-Dade police helped with helicopters and K9s. Miami police supplied dogs and its SWAT members, to no avail.
By early Monday morning, the streets were open and life returned to normal at the Fontainebleau and in the surrounding neighborhood. There was no sign, however, of the suspects.