Miami Gardens, Police

Miami Gardens Family Searches For Answers After Police Kill Man In Backyard

Daniel Lewis’s family continues their search for answers after the 27-year-old Lewis was shot and killed during a shootout involving ATF agents and the Miami Gardens Police Department on June 31.


Daniel Lewis’s family continues their search for answers after the 27-year-old Lewis was shot and killed during a shootout involving ATF agents and the Miami Gardens Police Department on June 31. It is currently unclear whether Lewis actually fired a shot or even presented a threat to officers; no shell casings matching his gun were found at the scene. 

According to NBC Miami, during a press conference on July 2, Lewis’ mother wanted to know why her son was killed. “I watched my son take his last breath, and that’s the hardest thing a mother could ever do, from the first to the last,” Angela Lewis said. “Nobody will understand what was taken from us, and all we want to know is why, why, why did it have to happen?”

Chris Lomax, one of the attorneys representing the family in a lawsuit to be filed against the Miami Gardens Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, a federal agency, said, “The answer to her question, ‘Why did this have to happen?’ is it did not have to happen, it absolutely did not have to happen, Mr. Lewis should still be here today.”

Another attorney for the family, Ariel Lett, told the outlet that the police did not identify themselves in any way. “Not once did anyone yell police, stop, police, freeze. Instead, what they did was they gunned down a law-abiding citizen in his backyard, on his back doorstep, without a warning.”

According to NBC Miami, Lewis was a father of two with no criminal record and had a permit to carry a firearm. He was at home on June 31 when his cousins were tailed by an unmarked car, which they allegedly believed were gang members. When Lewis stepped outside to investigate what was happening, he was shot.

Christopher Robinson, the special agent in charge of the ATF’s office in Miami, issued a statement to NBC Miami, declaring that some people shot at both his agents and members of the Miami Gardens Police Department, and fire was returned, resulting in the death of Lewis. “Unfortunately, some individuals discharged firearms at some Miami Gardens detectives as well as some of my agents, gunfire was returned, one individual struck, and he’s unfortunately deceased.” 

Lewis also told the Miami Herald, “My son went outside to see what was going on, and they shot him five times. They didn’t say anything to me. They didn’t tell me why,” Angela Lewis said. “No one tried to administer CPR. No one tried to help him. They just stood over him.” 

Although Miami Gardens Police Chief Delma Noel-Pratt told the Herald that it was currently too soon in their investigation to determine exactly who fired weapons, she indicated to the outlet that no officers had been injured. She also issued a warning at the scene of the shooting. “If folks are brazen enough to fire at our officers…they will be dealt with accordingly.”


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