Watch CBS News

'High On Mushrooms,' Miami Beach Accused Shooter Tells Police He Felt Empowered, Chose Victims At Random

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A 22-year-old man told Miami Beach police he felt empowered and chose to shoot two people at random Tuesday evening, killing one and wounding another, after getting high on mushrooms.

Police said Tamarius Blair Davis fatally shot a man who was sitting with his family in the outdoor section of La Cerveceria de Barrio on Ocean Drive near 14 Street.

The second victim was shot, but suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

The man who lost his life is being hailed as a hero by his uncle.

Michael Wakefield said his 21-year-old nephew Dustin was dining with his family when the gunman approached.

Video provided by CBS4 News partner The Miami Herald shows the arrest. A warning though, images may be disturbing.

.mcclatchy-embed{position:relative;padding:40px 0 56.25%;height:0;overflow:hidden;max-width:100%}.mcclatchy-embed iframe{position:absolute;top:0;left:0;width:100%;height:100%}

He said Dustin stood between him and his family and was shot at least three times. Michael calls his nephew a hero.

Markeeta Bradford tells CBS4's Peter D'Oench that she was at the La Cerveceria de Barrio restaurant when the shooting erupted around 6:30 p.m.

He (Dustin) said to the gunman, "He said this is my son. This is my son. This is my family and he shot him three times. And he did a little twirl and he walked off as if nothing was going on."

She was making a reference to the suspect dancing around the victim after he was shot.

Bradford said, "I feel hurt. I feel in pain. I feel unsafe. I feel like I am no longer on vacation. I feel like this was a horror movie."

Cell phone video captures Davis being arrested and shouting out in an alleyway, "I did it. I did it. I did it."

"After the shooting, he was dancing on top of the guy," said a witness, who didn't want to be identified.

The witness added he saw three shots fired from about two feet away.

Police said a Miami Beach park ranger heard a gunshot and he looked towards 14 Street and Ocean Drive. He observed a person being chased by Davis. Then, police said, several shots rang out.

Authorities said the park ranger saw Davis shooting towards the ground. At the same time, police said they received several 911 calls in reference to an active shooter in the area.

When police responded to the area, officers observed Davis trying to open a locked door while holding a firearm. The officers said they gave loud verbal commands to the
defendant to drop the firearm and he complied.

Davis was then taken into custody.

Responding officers said they located a victim suffering from multiple gunshot wounds and a second victim was shot, but not injured.

Police said witnesses positively identified Davis as the shooter.

Authorities said Davis waived his constitutional rights and confessed to shooting at both victims.

Davis said he was high on mushrooms, which made him feel empowered. He told police he randomly chose two men to shoot at.

Davis is facing several charges, including second-degree murder with a weapon and attempted murder.

Timothy Burgess said he saw the shooter fire another shot before the killing happened.

"So I'm sitting in the alley and I see the guy and he's like talking. He drops his backpack and pulls a gun out and shoots and I'm thinking it's time to go," he said.

Burgess said he took off.

"I'm like, 'Hey, this guy's got a gun.' And I get over here and he's on my and he's like chasing me around the car," Burgess said.

Completely unaware, moments later, the same man who he said was chasing him, would shoot and kill a random man just moments later.

Dustin was rushed to Jackson Memorial Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

"It was just very sad. It makes you realize how fragile life is. You are not safe anywhere. There are too many guns on the street, that is just my opinion," said tourist Natasha Marshall,

Dustin's uncle said Wakefield was vacationing with his wife and one-year-old son.

He was from Castle Rock, a town located 30 miles south of Denver and worked in the construction industry.

Miami Beach Police spokesman Officer Ernesto Rodriguez said, "In an interview with the subject he revealed he was under the influence of narcotics and confessed to the shootings. This was unfortunately a completely random act. There is no motive behind this."

Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said, "This is horrible. There is no other way to describe it. The fact that it appears that this was a random and senseless act provides no solace to the family of Mr. Wakefield obviously. All we can say is our hearts go out to them."

Wakefield's uncle said he worked in construction and loved music.

On Wednesday evening, the Wakefield family released the following statement:

"There are few words in the English language that can convey the depth of Dustin's love and generosity. For us, his family, he was the best son/brother/uncle/cousin/nephew/grandson you could ask for. His heart always put others first, even from a young age.

As a man, he was a faithful and loving husband. Karina is the love of his life, and she knows it. His love for her should inspire us. As a father he was full of love and pride. His son knows he is loved.

As a friend, there is not a person alive who did not feel his kindness, acceptance and love always from him. He would give freely to anyone, and would give from his heart full of love and acceptance.

He loved God. Every day he lived full of faith and peace and he shared that with others.

It is in his true character that he laid to rest, protecting his family. He is that man. We take great pride and comfort in the fact that we were blessed with the man who stepped in front of the bullet to save others. He has always been and he will continue to be our hero."

A gofundme page was created to help Dustin's family. Click here if you would like to help.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.