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Mother Of Alleged Miami Gardens Shooter Apologizes To Victim's Families

MIAMI GARDENS (CBS4) – For the first time, the mother of a 16-year-old boy who is accused in the slaying of a young couple at a gas station is speaking out and she is apologizing to the grieving families.

In a one-on-one interview with CBS4's Peter D'Oench, the mother of defendant Eric Ellington said, "I wish I could say something to make people understand. I'm hurting. I don't know what I can say to make them feel better, because I'm a mother. I have 3 boys and I raised them all by myself. I have a baby that's 7 months old and I would never want anybody to do that to them."

She said she was too embarrassed to give her name or show her face. With tears streaming down her face, she told D'Oench, "I feel sick about what happened. I really do. I'm hurting. I'm torn apart completely. I am hurt. You couldn't tell me in a million years that my son would be accused for being an accessory to anything like this. He's a good kid."

She said she hoped her message would reach the families of 24-year-old Kennia Duran, a mother of 6-year-old boy, and 23-year-old Julian Soler. Police say Ellington confessed to being one of the suspects who shot them at 12:38 on the morning of July 25th at a Mobil gas station just south of the Palmetto Expressway on NW 57th Ave.

Soler and Duran were both shot to death while gassing up Soler's 1997 Ford Mustand Cobra. They were ambushed, forced out of the car and shot. The shooting was captured on surveillance video from the store.

Miami Gardens Gas Station Shooting Surveillance Julian Soler Kennia Duran
(Photo Credit: Miami Gardens Police Department) Surveillance video shows a man pointing a gun at Julian Soler at a Miami Gardens gas station moments before he was shot and killed.

Police say Ellington named two of his accomplices and said his fingerprints were found on the victim's car.

"Did Eric say anything to you about the crime?" D'Oench asked Ellington's mother. "No I was clueless, clueless about the details."

But when he was arrested, she said she told her son to tell the truth.

"I told my son, baby, baby be honest. Confess to give the other families a relief. I didn't raise my son to be like this. Never, never. There was no reason. I don't know where he got a gun. We don't have a gun.

Ellington lived with his mother and her two other children and his grandfather.

In response to the mothers' comments, the step-father of Kennia Duran, George Eaquirol, told D'Oench, "I have no sympathy for her. Maybe she can do a better job of finding out more information from her son about the suspects. We need them to turn themselves in as soon as possible. There was just no reason for this to happen. It was totally senseless. Kennia had a little boy, just 6 years old. And her mother is devastated."

Ellington had nothing to say when he came before a Judge in bond court. He was held without bond and faces another hearing within the next 21 days.

We learned in court that he faces two counts of first degree murder.

His attorney, Jonathan Jordan, said, "It's premature to say very much about this case. The state has 15 days to give us documents under discovery. That will be part of the investigation. He is innocent until proven guilty."

A Police source told D'Oench that they believe Ellington fired seven to eight shots at the victim and there was no good reason for it.

The source said the suspects found out after the shooting that the victims' 1997 Ford Mustang Cobra had a stick shift and they would not have been able to drive it even if they had taken it in the botched carjacking.

The surveillance video shows two suspects in an older model Nissan Pathfinder pulling up next to Soler on the other side of the gas pump.

As Soler got back into his car, he was confronted by a person from the Pathfinder pointing a gun at him. Another suspect can be seen on the video pointing a gun at Duran. As the two got out of the car, the gunmen opened fire.

The video shows the armed suspects getting back into the Pathfinder and speeding away.  The Pathfinder, which had been torched, was found later.

Soler died on the pavement next to his car. Duran was rushed to the Ryder Trauma Center where she died.

Police are searching for at least two other suspects. There is a $10,000 reward in this case through Crime Stoppers.

Anyone with information on this case is asked to contact Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at (305) 471- TIPS (8477).

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