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Man suing rapper French Montana after Miami Gardens music video shooting left him paralyzed

Lawsuit filed over mass shooting at The Licking
Lawsuit filed over mass shooting at The Licking 03:41
Man injured in Miami Gardens shooting suing rapper French Montana 00:15

MIAMI - A man left paralyzed after he was shot during a music video shoot in front of a Miami Gardens restaurant is suing rapper French Montana.

Carlos Wilkerson has also named in the suit the restaurant, The Licking Miami Gardens, and the property management company.

CBS News Miami reached out to French Montana, his company Coke Boys, and The Licking restaurant. They did not respond as of Tuesday evening.

The shooting happened on January 5, 2023, in the parking lot of the restaurant at 17647 NW 27th Avenue.

An unknown gunman opened fire on the crowd gathered for the video shoot, nearly a dozen people were injured including Wilkerson, a cameraman.

Six people were taken to area hospitals, four of those were taken by air rescue to the Ryder Trauma Center. Another four drove themselves or had someone drive them to the hospital.

Wilkerson's mother, Shanta Bonius, said in a news conference Tuesday that her son was only in South Florida for one day to serve as a videographer for a music video. He never made it back to Louisiana.

Bonius said her 23-year-old son was shot in the back and is now paralyzed from the waist down. The pain is still very real for her and her family. 

"Most everybody has gone on with their life since this happened," she said. "We haven't."

In the lawsuit, Wilkerson claims, among other things, that Montana failed to get the necessary permits required by the city prior to shooting the music video, which would have ensured that proper security and police would have been present on the property in order to prevent or otherwise deter violence.

"He like us, came here selectively thinking that he was going to be working in a safe environment," Bonius said. "He thought that the proper measures were in place to ensure that he would be safe."

The lawsuit also alleges that The Licking and Gayle's Plaza failed to provide adequate security and/or law enforcement when it hosted or allowed the production to occur on the property.

CBS News Miami reporter Chelsea Jones requested an interview with officials with the City of Miami Gardens but they declined.

She also asked for an update on the criminal investigation by the Miami Gardens Police Department and did not get a response.

Attorney Josiah Graham who represents another shooting victim, Carl Leon, says there is a pattern of violence at The Licking and there needs to be accountability.

"Two years ago someone else was shot in the chest at the licking," Graham said.  

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