Coral Gables jewelry store remains closed after robbery that sparked wild shootout

Employee at Regent Jewelers shot during attempted robbery

CORAL GABLES, Fla. – The doors remained closed Friday at Regent Jewelers in Coral Gables, one day after shots were fired and chaos broke out inside and outside the store.

Store owners said they were told two suspects were posing as postal workers when they gained access to Regent Jewelers and attempted to rob the store. As the tense moments moved to the back alley, bullets went flying.

“When I heard the noise, I was really surprised at what was going on,” said Carlos Bolano, the owner of a hair salon near the jewelry store.

Bolano said he is still startled after shots were fired in the back alley Thursday and seeing jewelry store employee Liliana Sardi being carted off in an ambulance after being struck by a bullet.

“I know her. She’s a worker. She’s also a customer of mine," Bolano said. "She’s doing OK.”

Just across the street from the jewelry store, the bullets came flying toward City Hall, even striking a window in the city clerk’s office.

After the robbery attempt, suspects Ronnie Bell and Lamar Alexander took off in a U-Haul, later ditching it a mile away on Mariana Avenue, where they kidnapped UPS employee Frank Ordonez and stole his truck.

Lamar Alexander and Ronnie Hill were both felons.
Lamar Alexander and Ronnie Hill were both felons. (Florida Department of Corrections)

The city of Coral Gables was holding its tree lighting ceremony Friday night, just yards from where the shooting occurred. Police said security at the event will be increased.

“Our security plan has been in place, will continue to be in place," Coral Gables Police Chief Ed Hudak said. "It has been enhanced for little things we think may be in order.”

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