MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle has formally charged Willy Suarez Maceo in the murders of two homeless men in Miami.
"These types of homicides are best known as serial killings. It's a series of chances like detached killings that can defy a community's perception of danger and safety," said Fernandez Rundle.
Maceo has been charged with first-degree murder in the killings of a 56-year-old man on December 21, 2021, and a 59-year-old man in October 2021.
He's also been charged with attempted murder for another shooting in December.
In that October murder, investigators released a video showing a man, who they believe was Maceo walking toward the scene, then later running away. The video shows him getting into, what appeared to be, a dark Dodge Charger.
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"These types of anonymous seemingly haphazard killings can create a real sense of fear and unease, particularly among those who may identify as part of a targeted population," said Fernandez Rundle.
"In this case, the targeted population were Miami Dade homeless men who sleep outdoors in our community. These are some of our most vulnerable individuals in our community."
Maceo, 25, was arrested at the end of last year and has been held without bond.
In the December shooting, a witness flagged down an officer in 400 block of SW 2 Avenue at 8 p.m. about a person suffering from blunt force trauma to the head.
The officer discovered the man was suffering from a gunshot wound. He was taken to Jackson Memorial Hospital in extremely critical condition. That man survived.
Nearly two hours later, another man was found dead from a gunshot wound in the area of Miami Avenue and 21 Street in Wynwood.
Investigators showed surveillance video of what they believe is the same Dodge Charger pulling up and shooting out the window hitting the victim 5 times.
Police were able to get a partial tag. They quickly found the car and suspect.
Miami police said they were able to link Maceo to the shootings using ballistic test results from recovered bullet casings and surveillance video.
He was taken to the station for questioning and arrested in December.
On Friday, he was officially charged with the shootings. He's being held without bond.
David Peery, with The Miami Coalition to Advance Racial Equity, a non-profit that advocates for the homeless said a lot more needs to be done to protect the homeless population, including changing the narrative of how the homeless are perceived.
"To me, it's no surprise that you'll see somebody out there who is exerting violence on the homeless given that the city has created an environment of dehumanization of the homeless," said Peery who blames the City of Miami for the increase in crime against the population.
"The very first thing the city must do is stop the demagoguery, stop dehumanizing people who are victims of poverty and who are vulnerable to this type of violence on a daily basis," added Peery.
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