An attempt to serve a warrant for a bank robbery ended in a fatal shooting in the Miami River Friday morning, after the armed suspect led police on a two-hour chase involving two carjackings before jumping in the water and refusing to surrender to police, authorities said.
The man, Ernesto Padron, 52, died at the scene. No police officers were injured in the shooting.
The police chase started around 6:30 a.m., when FBI agents and Miami-Dade police officers arrived at the man’s home in north Miami-Dade to serve a warrant related to a Sept. 29 robbery of a Wells Fargo bank on Sunset Drive, said Justin Fleck, the FBI acting assistant special agent in charge.
The suspect grabbed a handgun and ran from officers, Fleck said. He then carjacked a nearby resident’s brown car and drove away.
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Police officers pursued him along several highways in Miami-Dade, following him along the Palmetto Expressway and the Gratigny Parkway during the morning rush hour, according to Miami Herald news partners CBS4. Padron eventually crossed into the city of Miami, where he abandoned the first stolen car and carjacked another at gunpoint near Northwest 21st Street and 14th Avenue, authorities said.
After another police chase, the man eventually left the SUV under the 27th Avenue bridge and jumped into the Miami River. Officers from Miami-Dade and the city of Miami surrounded him in boats near a concrete ledge and tried to convince him to surrender, Miami-Dade spokesman Carlos Rosario said.
Officers attempted to take the man into custody around 9:30 a.m., but he refused to drop a weapon and was shot, authorities said. Miami-Dade Fire Rescue responded after the shooting and declared him dead at the scene.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the shooting. Preliminary reports indicated that seven Miami-Dade officers and two City of Miami police officers fired at Padron.
State records show that Padron had an extensive criminal history, serving five different stints in state prison on charges such as robbery and burglary. Most recently, Padron was arrested in Broward County on allegations he stole $1,217 worth of power tools from a Davie Home Depot in June, then pointed a gun at a store security officer.
Despite his criminal history, Padron was released in July from jail to await trial. He was ordered to wear an ankle monitor, which he was still wearing when he allegedly robbed the bank.
Miami Herald staff writer David Ovalle contributed to this report.