Miramar, FL — As TFTP reported last week, two innocent civilians were gunned down last Thursday in a tragedy that unfolded in Miramar, Florida. Family and friends are now grieving the loss of a UPS driver killed after being taken hostage by armed robbers. An innocent bystander who just happened to be driving down the highway was also killed in the crossfire as responding cops hid behind the vehicles of innocent civilians, using them as human shields. Adding insult to this horrific incident is the fact that police and FBI are refusing to answer any questions for the family who laid their beloved son to rest this week.
“Today is the fifth day and I know nothing.,” said Luz Apolinario as she left the funeral for her son, 27-year-old Frank Ordonez, according to the Miami Herald.
“The only thing I know is that I have left my son here and that my son will not come back and I have to live on my own. That’s all I know, and that it was not time to leave him here,” said Apolinario, who spoke after burying her son Tuesday at Vista Memorial Gardens in Miami Lakes. “I feel I am dead inside.”
Since last Thursday, the family has been demanding transparency but they haven't received anything close to it. Instead, police and the FBI — who is in now charge of the investigation — have said almost nothing.
“They murdered him,” Joe Merino, the stepfather of Frank Ordonez, told Local 10 News in a heartfelt interview. “I hope you can understand that and how I feel because it could have been prevented.”
“I have common sense, like we all do, and it shows me, where’s the protocol? Where was protocol? Where was SWAT? Where was the hostage negotiator? Where was the sniper?” Merino said. “They shot him dead!"
Morena told Local 10 that police ignored the safety of everyone involved when they reacted to the situation on Thursday.
“The negligence, the irresponsibility, the lack of life, the lack of concern," Merino said. “The disregard for life for the victim.”
“There’s bullets everywhere," he said. "It was a war zone. How can this happen in today’s day and age?”
Indeed, multiple videos from bystanders show a chaotic scene unfold as police exchange gunfire with the armed robbers, as Merino notes — "like the wild wild west." One such video showed the UPS truck from up close. The video showed the truck full of bullet holes — put there by the cops.
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The deadly incident began as an armed robbery last Thursday afternoon at a Regent Jewelers in Coral Gables. When the thugs escaped the robbery, they hijacked a UPS truck as the driver was making deliveries and led police on a long chase. The chase ended in a hail of bullets as cowboy cops endangered dozens of innocent people on the highway.
Some 19 officers from five different agencies surrounded the UPS truck on the highway with weapons drawn. As the video showed, the officers placed innocent civilians between them and the robbers, literally using them as human shields.
As the helicopter footage shows, the robbers inside the truck were firing shots from inside. However, they were heavily outgunned by the officers who were estimated to have unloaded over 200 rounds into the truck.
While it has not yet been 'officially' confirmed, it will likely come back that police are responsible for the deaths of Ordonez and Richard Cutshaw, a 70-year-old Pembroke Pines resident and union representative who was driving a nearby car. The responding officers acted more like cowboys than any rational law enforcement. Hindsight is indeed 20/20 but consider the facts of the situation and the mistakes and violence caused by the police response.
These two drivers were dangerous and had hijacked a UPS truck and kidnapped the driver. They would have had nothing to gain from keeping the driver hostage unless police would have followed them. There was no reason for police to follow the truck. Consider the following facts as to why they did not need to follow the UPS truck.
All UPS trucks have GPS locators in them, they could have found them later. All the merchandise inside the truck was insured. The truck is very slow and easily seen from far away. A helicopter had already been following it. Had police simply allowed the truck to escape — or, at least, think they escaped — they could've set up a perimeter, gotten civilians out of harms way, and Ordonez and Cutshaw may still be alive today.
Sadly, none of that happened and now two young children will grow up knowing their father is dead because of negligence by the ones who claim to protect them.
The Herald reports that Apolinario told reporters Tuesday that Ordonez’s daughters, ages 5 and 3, still don’t know or understand the details of what happened to their dad.
Ordonez “was the best young man, honest, friendly. He spread love,” Apolinario said.