Man Sentenced in Shooting of Miami Gardens Police Officer
Randy Thomas, 45, of Miami Gardens, was sentenced yesterday to life in prison after having been convicted at trial of being a convicted felon who shot and injured a local police officer.
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, Hugo Barrera, Special Agent in Charge, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Miami Filed Office, and Antonio G. Brooklen, Interim Chief, Miami Gardens Police Department, made the announcement.
Evidence presented at trial revealed that on January 11, 2014, two Miami Gardens Police Officers responded to a 911 call for assistance. On the scene, an officer separated Thomas and two women who were in a fight. Thomas then began to walk away. Another officer approached Thomas and asked him to stop, so that an investigation could be conducted. Thomas responded by turning around and pointing a gun at the officer. The officer attempted to flee to safety but was pursued by Thomas who fired at and struck the officer in the thigh. In order to protect the community and disarm the defendant, responding officers fired at Thomas. A 9mm pistol was recovered inches from Thomas’ hand, along with several matching spent shell casings. Video surveillance, introduced at trial, captured the shooting.
As a result of the gunshot wound, the responding officer underwent months of medical treatment before being able to return to his job.
Thomas is pending charges in state court for the attempted first degree murder of the law enforcement officer.
U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer stated, “Police officers put their lives on the line to protect us every single day. Individuals who target those sworn to maintain our safety will face judgment and be prosecuted accordingly.”
ATF Special Agent in Charge Hugo Barrera stated, “Our community is very fortunate to have heroes that stand ready to defend us against violent criminals who want to harm us. ATF stands with our state and local partners to reduce violent crime and ensure that justice prevails.”
Interim Chief of Police for Miami Gardens Police Department Antonio G. Brooklen added, “The citizens of this great community have once again spoken and brought to bear a clear message that should resonate in the minds of all who would think to violate the law and that is, ‘Be it a private citizen or a law enforcement officer, criminal acts of this nature will be dealt with swiftly and without impartiality.’ The events that took place on January 11, 2014, could have resulted in a greater tragedy: we are thankful they did not, and applaud the multi-jurisdictional efforts that resulted in the successful prosecution of this case. We at the Miami Gardens Police Department are grateful for the continued support of U.S. Attorney Wifredo Ferrer; Special Agent in Charge Hugo Barrera - Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; and State Attorney Katherine Fernandez-Rundle.”
Mr. Ferrer commended the investigatory efforts of the ATF and Miami Gardens Police Department. Mr. Ferrer also thanked State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle and members of the Miami Dade Office of the State Attorney for their assistance with this matter. This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Cristina Moreno and Francisco Maderal.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at www.justice.gov/usao-sdfl. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.