Surveillance video from a Miami flea market, cell records and eyewitness testimony led to the arrest of two men accused of murdering 7-year-old Alana Washington during a drive-by shooting, newly released court records show.
The new details emerged one day after Miami-Dade homicide detectives arrested Antonio Robinson, 22, and Jarvis Baker-Flanders, 23, and charged them with Alana’s death. The girl was struck in the head during a drive-by shooting that also wounded a 1-year-old relative and two adults outside a home in Brownsville on July 25.
Robinson is being held at the Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center in Miami-Dade. Baker-Flanders was arrested in Georgia, and is awaiting extradition to South Florida.
“A trip to the flea market should not be the last life experience of a 7-year-old,” Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernández Rundle said at a press conference on Thursday afternoon.
Also injured in the shooting was a 1-year-old infant named Alto. He was shot and wounded in the thigh. Also shot were Cynthia Bloom, 23, and Alana’s older brother, Demetriel Rice, 24. A man with them went inside the house, grabbed a gun and returned fire.
Both men confessed to their roles in the murder, according to law-enforcement sources. They are charged with second-degree murder and multiple counts of attempted murder.
Investigators believe the drive-by came in retaliation for another fatal shooting months earlier in Northwest Miami-Dade. According to law-enforcement sources, and the arrest warrant released on Thursday, this is what happened:
Robinson and Baker-Flanders were part of a group of men who hang around at the Lincoln Fields apartment complex in Liberty City, and they had roughed up a teenage relative of Rice in May. The following day, on May 2, they saw Rice and his brother and attacked them, investigators believe.
Rice was shot and wounded in the attack, but managed to return fire and fatally hit 21-year-old Dae’yun D. Solomon, who was friends with Robinson and Baker-Flanders, according to sources. Rice was not arrested, as investigators believed he acted in self-defense.
Robinson and Baker-Flanders — who later got a detailed portrait of Solomon tattooed on his chest — vowed revenge, sources said.
Rice left town, but later returned in July for a family gathering. That’s when he, Bloom, another man and the kids went to the flea market on Northwest 79th Street and 27th Avenue.
Little did they know, Rice had been spotted and was under surveillance, according to the warrant by Miami-Dade homicide Detective Kurt Berardino.
Surveillance video showed they were being tailed by Robinson and Baker-Flanders, who followed them while in a gray Nissan Altima. Another man in a black Volkswagen was also watching the targets in the parking lot and calling Baker-Flanders, the warrant said.
The shooting happened after the adults — along with the children — were getting out of their car after they arrived back from the flea market to the home on the 2900 block of Northwest 51st Street.
Detectives later identified the Altima as one lent to Baker-Flanders on the day of the shooting, the warrant said. Cellphone data also showed that Robinson and Baker-Flanders were in the area of the flea market, and the drive-by shooting, that day, according to police.
Another witness also identified Robinson and Baker-Flanders — who was wearing a distinct white shirt with orange figures on it — as having been at the flea market that day, police said.
Both Rice and Bloom told police that they saw the Altima following them, and identified Baker-Flanders, whom they both knew, the warrant said. Police say Baker-Flanders was identified as the man who leaned out of the Altima and opened fire, according to the warrant.
“Alana’s life mattered,” Miami-Dade Police Director Alfredo Ramirez said at Thursday’s press conference. “We did not forget her. We did not let her die in vain.”