As prosecutors and police continued investigating whether seven young adults committed a crime when they let themselves in to former Miami Heat star Ray Allen’s mansion in Tahiti Beach in Coral Gables, a fuller picture emerged of what happened in the early morning hours last Thursday.
A night of bonfires on the beach, music and s’mores quickly turned into a crime scene when six men and one woman — all 18, except one 19-year-old — took an unauthorized tour of the Allens’ home at 2:31 a.m. on Aug. 14, while Allen’s wife, Shannon Walker Allen, lay asleep with her four children in her bedroom, according to Coral Gables police reports. Allen was not home at the time.
Several supplemental police reports issued by the Coral Gables police department on Monday night detail the events. According to the police reports, the following occurred:
The seven suspects — Ernesto Romero, 18; Jonathan Ramirez, 19; Kevin Ramos, 18; Alana Garcia, 18; Christian Lobo, 18; Angel Sanchez, 18; and Jorge Guerrero, 18 — had gone to visit a friend, Sara Sigal, 18, at the Coconut Grove home where she lived with her mother, Marcie Sigal. The seven suspects all live in Miami — mainly between southwest 62nd Avenue and Red Road, from around Coral Way up to Flagler Street, except for Garcia, who lives in the Grove.
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Sara and friends decided to go to Sara’s father’s home in Tahiti Beach, an enclave of multimillion-dollar waterfront mansions at the tip of Cocoplum that can be entered only by a guard gate. Miami-Dade property records list the owner of an 8,165-square foot home in the 27 block of Tahiti Beach Island Road as Philip A. Sigel.
The young adults gathered at the beach, built a bonfire, listened to music, ate s’mores and reminisced before heading off to college. They began talking about the house near the beach, the Allens’ home.
After a while, the seven suspects decided to walk into the backyard of the Allens’ home. They looked into the windows and there were boxes on the floor and some furniture was wrapped in plastic. They told police they believed the home was not occupied.
One of the suspects, Guerrero, found an unlocked rear door, through which the seven entered the home. Once inside, Romero pressed a key on the piano and it played a note. The seven walked around, using a flashlight app on their cell phones to show the way. They admired the pictures on the wall.
The seven climbed up the stairs and entered a bedroom, where they were startled by a woman’s voice.
“What the f--- are you doing in my house?’’ Shannon Walker Allen screamed.
Walker Allen told police said she then heard a female voice say, “Oh, my God!’’
The seven ran down the stairs, scampered out the back French door from which they entered and returned to the beach to collect their belongings.
Meanwhile, Walker Allen had called the gate house guard in Tahiti Beach, who called the Coral Gables police. The guard gave police the tag numbers of three vehicles in question. The police issued a lookout for the tags and while investigating the crime scene, one of the officers stopped a vehicle that had one of the matching tags.
The car had two young women in in it. One of the women, Cobo Dominguez, told police she had been at a party with several friends on the beach and had returned to retrieve some sandals left on the beach. She told police the other people from the party were at the Coconut Grove home of Marci Sigal.
At about 4:30 a.m., Coral Gables police went to Marci Sigal’s home. There they found the seven standing outside. Police talked to Marci Sigal, who told them she had learned that seven of her daughter’s friends went inside Ray Allen’s home because they thought it was vacant. After Shannon Walker confronted them, her daughter and her friends came back to her home.
When she learned what happened, Marci Sigal instructed the seven to remain at her home because she did not want her daughter to take the fall for her friends’ actions. She said the kids were all “good kids’’ who had just graduated from high school. They were spending one more evening together before heading to college and ended up doing something “stupid.’’
Craig Leen, Coral Gables city attorney, said Tuesday the state attorney’s office is deciding whether the seven will be charged with trespassing of an occupied structure, a misdemeanor, or burglary, a felony. To be charged with burglary, the state must prove the young adults entered the house with an intent to commit a crime. Trespassing only requires the state to prove the suspects entered the house without the owner’s consent.
“The State Attorney’s Office has to decide whether to bring a felony or a misdemeanor,” Leen said. “They indicated that they would look at the statement and then make a decision as to what the charges will be.”
Ed Griffith, a spokesman for the state attorney’s office, would not confirm Tuesday when prosecutors would make a decision. The Allens and their attorney met with Coral Gables police and the state attorney’s office on Monday.
“The Allens did come into the state attorney’s office,” Griffith said. “They have provided statements regarding the incident at their home and they do wish to press criminal charges. Presently, we are continuing to gather evidence regarding this matter.”
Miami Herald writers Alexi Cardona and Rebeca Piccardo contributed to this story.