Gunman Fatally Shoots Tourist Protecting His Baby in Florida Restaurant

By The Associated Press
The Associated Press
The Associated Press
August 25, 2021 Updated: August 25, 2021

MIAMI BEACH, Fla.—A gunman fatally shot a tourist eating dinner with his family at a Miami Beach restaurant as the man protected his 1-year-old son, police and a family member said.

Tamarius Blair David Jr., 22, of Norcross, Georgia, told investigators he shot Dustin Wakefield, 21, on Tuesday night because he “was high on mushrooms, which made him feel empowered,” according to his arrest report.

David allegedly told police he approached the patio area of the La Cerveceria restaurant just before 6:30 p.m. and randomly decided to shoot Wakefield, who was on vacation from Castle Rock, Colorado. In a short video taken immediately after the shooting and obtained by WSVN-TV, the gunman can be seen dancing while people are heard screaming. The gunman then walks up some steps, the weapon in his hand.

Mike Wakefield, the victim’s uncle, told the Miami Herald that Dustin Wakefield died protecting his young son.

“This guy came in with a gun waving, saying it’s time to die. He pointed the gun at his son and Dustin said, ‘He’s only a boy,’” said Mike Wakefield, who was not in South Beach but heard the account from his family. “Dustin stood up between the gunman and the baby and he shot him. He shot him multiple times on the ground.”

He said of his nephew, who worked in construction, “He was the kindest kid. He loved his family. He loved being a dad.”

David fled the restaurant, police said, and was captured in a nearby alley. Cellphone video obtained by the Herald shows David lying spread-eagle on his back and smiling as three officers approach with their guns pointed towards him yelling commands, warning him that if he touches his gun he will be shot.

David then rolled onto his side into a fetal position, before again rolling onto his back as officers approached. David screamed “I give, I give, I give” as officers flip him onto his stomach and handcuff him. The video shows a black handgun lying about 10 feet away.

David is charged with murder and was being held without bond Wednesday at the Miami-Dade County Jail. Jail records do not indicate if he has an attorney.

The Associated Press
The Associated Press