MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Isariel Delestre surrendered to the Miami Beach Police Department on Monday night after fleeing from officers during a chaotic chase in a stolen black Cadillac, authorities said.
Detectives believe Delestre, 18, was the driver at about 2:30 p.m. on Sunday on Alton Road and South Pointe Drive. They said he side-swiped an officer’s vehicle at Ocean Drive and Second Street during the chase.
Delestre escaped and a 15-year-old boy quickly got in the driver’s seat and stepped on the gas, police said. Videos show the teenage boy nearly struck pedestrians on Ocean Drive.
He and a police officer who was chasing him drove through Lummus Park, between Sixth and Seventh streets. Officer Ernesto Rodriguez, a spokesman for the Miami Beach Police Department, said the officer did the right thing.
“Had it not been for the officer who was traveling behind him with his lights, and most importantly, sirens activated, all of those pedestrians would not have been alerted,” Rodriguez said.
The teenager ran out of the car after getting a flat tire at Washington Avenue and Sixth Street. Officers arrested him. Police said they recovered a loaded Glock 19 with an extended 24-round magazine in the driver’s side of the stolen car.
The incident occurred as police and city leaders try to tamp down the crime in the area after seeing a spike in pandemic-fatigued tourists.
The city has already put extra police staffing in place while also ending all liquor sales in the entertainment district after 8 p.m.
License plate readers along the causeways will be in use, as well.
“Well, if you’re coming here because you think it’s an anything goes place, please turn around or go somewhere else,” Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said.