Crime

Two teenagers shot in parking lot behind Frankie’s Pizza in West Miami-Dade, cops say

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Two teenagers were shot inside a car in broad daylight Monday afternoon as they tried to escape a robbery attempt in the gravel parking lot behind landmark restaurant Frankie’s Pizza in Southwest Miami-Dade, police said.

Miami-Dade Detective Argemis Colome said the men, 18 and 19, were sitting inside a tan Lexus when two other men about the same age pulled up beside them in a black SUV. One of the men in the SUV got out of the vehicle, pointed a weapon at the men inside the Lexus and demanded property, Colome said.

When the men in the Lexus tried to escape, the gunman opened fire, grazing the driver in the cheek and striking the passenger in the leg. The driver of the Lexus, the 19-year-old, managed to get away and drove to Kendall Regional Medical Center. He was treated and released. The other victim, the 18-year-old, was admitted in stable condition, Colome said.

“The victims drove away out of fear,” said Colome. “They were brazen enough to fire into an occupied vehicle.”

Police wouldn’t speculate about a motive or say whether the men knew each other. They said the shooting stemmed from some type of robbery attempt.

Though Frankie’s is closed on Monday, owner Roxanne Pasquarella happened to be at the restaurant at 9118 Bird Rd. She said no one involved in the incident worked there, and with the air conditioning blasting inside the pizzeria, she didn’t hear the gunfire or the squeal of wheels as the car took off.

A woman who lives on the street behind the pizza shop said she wandered outside her home to have a cigarette just after 1:30 p.m. and noticed a strange car blocking the entrance to the parking lot. She said she then went back inside her home to tell her husband and that’s when she heard two shots.

As she ran back outside she saw a gray Ford Explorer with tinted windows racing away. The shooter, she said, wore shorts, a T-shirt and a cap.

“I thought someone robbed the gas station,” said the woman, who only gave her name as Gigi. “I ran outside with my brother-in-law.”

A Friday Miami.com article by Herald Food Editor Carlos Frias listed Frankie’s as one of the bucket-list iconic Miami restaurants to enjoy.



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