Crime and Safety, News

Gunman opens fire inside Shops at Merrick Park

The Shops at Merrick Park were shut down after a gunman opened fire inside the Equinox fitness center leaving two dead, including the shooter, and one wounded. Amanda Herrera // Assistant News Editor

Update, 9:12 p.m., April 12, 2017: Hortis died early morning on April 9 following being transported to a nearby hospital after being shot by Wilson on April 8.

A gunman shot two people at the Shops at Merrick Park in Coral Gables early afternoon Saturday, leaving one dead and another injured before turning the gun on himself.

According to the Miami-Dade Police Department, at approximately 12:55 p.m., shots were heard inside the mall coming from the second floor. The shooter, identified as Abeku Wilson, 33, was an ex-employee of the Equinox fitness center inside of the Shops at Merrick Park. Coral Gables Police Department Officer Kelly Denham said the shooting took place inside of the gym and “was not an active shooter” situation but rather a targeted incident.

According to The Miami Herald, Wilson shot and killed the gym’s general manager, Janine Ackerman, 35, and wounded fitness manager Marios Hortis, 42, before killing himself. Hortis later died at the hospital the following day, April 9.

Social media accounts for Wilson say he attended the University of Miami in the past.

UM student Gabby Rosenbloom was at the Shops during the shooting to advertise a show for the UM theatre department when she and her friend saw people running. Rosenbloom said that around 1 p.m., the owner of Janie and Jack, a children’s clothing store, told them to get inside the store and seek shelter. She said herself, three of her friends, the store’s two owners and three patrons including two children remained in the storage room in the back of the store.

“As freaked out as we all were, we tried to keep calm for the two little girls. It was sort of comforting to have them there because in having them there it sort of distracted us,” she said.

At 1:59 p.m., police officers escorted Rosenbloom and the rest of the civilians inside the clothing store down the escalators and to a holding area.

“We were very lucky. I never thought we would end up in a situation like that,” Rosenbloom said.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

April 8, 2017

Reporters

Amanda Herrera

Amanda Herrera can be reached via email at aherrera@themiamihurricane.com and through Twitter at @_AmandaHerrera.


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

A six-pack of Canes notes on a Thursday: ▪ Draft-eligible Canes players are getting increasing recog ...

Three days after the University of Miami announced that defensive line coach Craig Kuligowski was le ...

Not only are the Hurricanes in the mix for at least five high-end running backs for the 2019 class, ...

After assembling one of the nation’s best groups of skill position players in the 2018 recruiting cl ...

Coach Kool, AKA Craig Kuligowski, is gone from the University of Miami, which is entirely uncool wit ...

The popular Christian minister preached to more people than any other evangelist in history. ...

A vigil on the University of Miami campus, organized by UM students who graduated from Marjory Stone ...

The latest speaker in the popular lecture series at the Rosenstiel School, Jeff Goodell, shared insi ...

At the University of Miami, the professor has the last word on whether students can use their laptop ...

Members of the University of Miami first response teams remind us of resources available and what to ...

The University of Miami men's tennis team (5-2) returns to the court on Friday at 4 p.m., as it ...

Continuing a season-opening, seven-game homestand, No. 24 Miami is looking for its second straight s ...

Former Hurricane guard signs 10-day contract with Indiana Pacers. ...

For the second straight game, Miami's starting pitcher looked in dominant form through the firs ...

The University of Miami track and field team will compete against fellow conference members at the 2 ...

TMH Twitter Feed
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.