Miami police are looking into accusations that police chasing a motorcycle on an overpass at the southern end of I-95 caused it to crash and launch over a rail to a street below, killing the biker and severely injuring his wife.
A brief part of the accident, which happened Sunday afternoon, was filmed by another bike rider and later posted to social media by Alejandro Mustafa. The post, however, was removed from social media Tuesday night.
"I just want justice for my cousin," said Mustafa, who said the biker was his cousin, 29-year-old Yoinis Cruz Peña. Mustafa, who often rides with his cousin, said he was not there when the accident happened.
The 11-second video clip, which appeared on the Miami police union's Twitter feed, showed four bikers riding down I-95 and a blue-and-white Miami police car passing two of them in the left lane. Then the video ends. Another clip, from the top of the overpass, showed two bikers on the ground below.
Reached at a seminar out of state, Miami Deputy Police Chief Ron Papier confirmed that his department was looking into the crash.
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“We don’t know what the video is showing,” said Papier. “We’re asking for the public’s help and we’d like to speak with the person who took the video.
Ed Lugo, president of the MIAMI FOP, said it was "unfortunate that the media focuses on if the police chased this group of motorcyclists that live on taunting the police."
"There is no evidence that they were chased. On the contrary, Miami police officers were responding code 3 to render first aid. Instead of the deceased motorcycle “family” rendering first aid to him, they were too busy taking cell phone videos of his lifeless body next to a woman fighting for her life."
Late Tuesday, Lugo reacted on Twitter to the videos being removed.
"@_moneydice why did you delete the post? Because instead of trying to save your cousin’s life, you watched him die. Too busy posting on social media," he wrote.
According to Miami police, the accident happened at about 3:30 p.m. Sunday on the off-ramp leading onto the southbound lanes of U.S. 1, where Interstate 95 ends. The department said Tuesday it was investigating the fatal crash that left one person dead and another critically injured.
After the video surfaced, the department reacted with an "official statement."
"At this time, the Miami Police Department does not have knowledge or information of any Miami Police officer or any other agency in pursuit of the said motorcycle, or any other motorcycle, in the area at the time of the crash," the department said.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Miami Police department at 305-605-6525 or Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS (8477).