A man who stabbed his wife and teenage son was shot to death by Miami-Dade police before dawn Thursday in southwest Miami-Dade, authorities said.
Ernesto Medina López, 42, was killed during a confrontation with police at Carib Villas, an apartment complex at 11201 SW 197th St. Around 1:40 a.m., police received a 911 call about the incident.
“When the officers arrived on the scene there was a confrontation with the individual, who was armed with a knife,” said Detective Alvaro Zabaleta, a spokesman for Miami-Dade Police. “Shots were fired and he died at the scene. So far, everything appears to point to a case of domestic violence.”
The wife and the 13-year-old son were transported by helicopter to Ryder Trauma Center at Jackson Memorial Hospital, where they were in stable condition, Zabaleta said.
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Neighbors identified the wife as Betsy Bisset, 35, and said the couple were from eastern Cuba. They had two sons, the teenager and a 6 year old.
A security guard at the apartment complex, Luis Miguel Morales, told Miami Herald news partner CBS4 that he saw the teenage son bloodied and shoeless, running and screaming for help.
“I was on patrol and heard a commotion. I heard screams, and I went to find what was going on,” said the guard. “I saw the boy, and I noticed he was bleeding, that he was injured. I called 911 and gave them all the information I had at that time. Then I put some pressure dressing on the wounds until Rescue arrived.”
Rolando Valdivia, a Medina friend who works as a maintenance man in a nearby residential complex, said he was baffled by the incident. Visibly shaken, Valdivia described Medina as a “beautiful person” who suffered from epilepsy and apparent hallucinations.
“He was a great person,” Valdivia insisted. “I don't know what happened. Only God knows what happened there. But I think his disease led him to this madness.”
The Facebook page of a Medina relative shows photos of the husband becoming a U.S. citizen in March.
The officers from the Hammocks district involved in the shooting were not named. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating.
Medina's is the fourth death reported in the last two weeks in Miami-Dade in domestic violence cases.
On Sept. 9, Manuel Macías Rodríguez, a security guard at a Hispanic market in Kendall, shot to death his wife, Alina Lomonte Carreras. They had separated a few months earlier, after a 20-year marriage. Macías later shot himself in the head, but survived.
On Wednesday, Óscar Mendoza, 45 strangled and killed his wife, Gilma Martínez, 40, then hanged himself in the western Hialeah apartment they had shared for more than a decade. The couple, from Honduras, had four children.
From 2010 to 2014, police in Miami recorded more than 25,000 cases of domestic violence.
“Unfortunately, in the last few weeks we have had many tragic cases,” said Zabaleta. “We realize that domestic violence affects everyone.”
Follow Enrique Flor on Twitter: @kikeflor