Two Miami McDonald's and a Taco Bell Hit By Armed Robbers This Week
Chances are, if you're in a fast food restaurant around midnight on a weekday then you're probably not having the best day already. So masked men with guns barging into the restaurant and demanding your money and cell phone just seems like karmic cruelty. Yet, that's exactly what's happened three times at three separate fast food restaurants in Miami-Dade in the past few days. Police are now trying to determine if the cases are related.
Update: Three men have been taken into custody.
The first incident happened at a Taco Bell on 79th Street at around 1 a.m. on Monday morning. No one was inside but employees. Two men demanded money from the cash register and safe, and made off with about $435 (not counting the $15 they dropped in the parking lot).
Last night at around midnight, the McDonald's at 3200 S. Dixie Highway was hit with a similar crime. According to NBC Miami, this time customers were in the restaurant. Two men barged in wearing ski masks. At least one had a gun and ordered everyone down to the floor. The men collected everyones' cell phones and took the computer terminals, but couldn't get into the cash registers.
About two hours later the McDonald's at 1016 West Flagler Street in Little Havana became the next victim. This time the robbers smashed a rock through a glass window to enter (but CBS Miami notes that was needless as the door directly next to the window was actually unlocked at the time). Again two men in ski masks came in demanding cash and electronics. The men made off with customers' cell phones, at least one laptop, and were successful in taking cash from the register.
A car matching the description of the get-away vehicle in the Little Havana case was stopped by police a short while later. The two men inside were apprehended, and wads of cash and electronics were found inside. Though, police aren't officially confirming that the arrests were related to the crimes, or if any of the fast food crimes are actually related.
Update: Police have confirmed that they've arrested Eddie Lee Thomasiv, 19, Leon Westbrook, 19, and Alan Westbrook, 22, in connection to the Little Havana McDonald's robbery. Authorities are still trying to determine if the men were involved in the other crimes.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Miami New Times' biggest stories.