Miami Beach police detectives are trying to solve a mystery that includes a fatal shooting and a stolen car whose owner has also been reported missing.
Police spokeswoman Melissa Berthier said in a Miami Herald report that 29-year-old Kamil Patel was killed late Jan. 25 as he walked down a Miami Beach alley with his girlfriend, Katy Park. Park told police that a car pulled up, someone got out of the passenger seat and shot the Indian American man in the shoulder and abdomen, according to the report.
The car drove away, but police identified it through surveillance video. They tracked the temporary license plate to 54-year-old Orestes Conrado Marrero, whose family reported him and his car missing Jan. 26, it said.
Investigators say they don't know what happened to Marrero, or whether he was in the car when Patel was shot, according to the publication.
Park has started a GoFundMe page seeking justice for Patel. At time of press, Park’s page had raised more than $23,500, just shy of her $30,000 goal.
In the GoFundMe page, Park said that Patel moved to Miami from Dallas on Jan. 8 to be the operations manager for Prada Bal Harbour. Prior to this, he worked for Louis Vuitton for six years in Dallas which is where he and Park developed a friendship.
“Kamil picked me up from the airport around 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, January 25, 2018 and by midnight, he was gone,” Park, who flew out to visit her friend, wrote on the page.
Park described the night, saying the two left his apartment around 10:30 p.m. to go to a bar. They stayed there for a short while and were heading to a karaoke bar when the incident happened.
“A small African American male got out of the passenger side of a white car pointing a gun at us,” she wrote. “He fired two shots that hit Kamil in the left shoulder and abdomen, then got back in the car and disappeared,” she said.
“I am alive because Kamil protected me. He didn’t hesitate. His last words were ‘Katy, keep walking,’” she added.
A memorial service for Patel is scheduled for Feb. 3, which would have been his 30th birthday. Park said any donations to the GoFundMe page (see page here: http://bit.ly/2FwCmEq) will be used by the Patel family to help offset the cost of funeral and memorial expenses as well as add to the reward offered by the Miami-Dade Police Department.
Any information about the incident can be directed to the Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at (305) 471-TIPS.