Motive for shooting rampage unknown

2013-07-28 21:01

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Florida - Police on Sunday said they still do not know what provoked a rampage by a 42-year-old Cuban-American who shot to death six of his neighbours before being killed by police.

Hialeah police chief Carl Zogby confirmed reports that the suspect, Pedro Vargas, had set fire to $10 000 in cash at the start of Friday night's rampage in an apartment building.

"But the reasons for this irrational situation are unknown," Zogby said, who said police were still trying to determine Vargas' motives.

Police believe the incident began when the building's manager, Italo Pisciotti, 79, and his wife Samira, 69, went to his apartment in response to the fire, local press reports said.

He then moved from floor to floor, gunning people down.

Vargas broke into a neighbour's apartment, shooting to death Patricio Simono, 65, Merly Nieves, 51, and their 17-year-old daughter who tried to hide in the bathtub.

At one point, Vargas opened fire from his balcony, killing 33-year-old Carlos Gavilanes as he arrived at his apartment building across the street with his nine-year-old son.

After lengthy negotiations failed to get him to surrender, a police SWAT team entered the building early on Saturday morning and fatally shot Vargas, who was holding a couple hostage at the time.

Vargas, who lived with his mother, arrived in the United States in 1997 and became a citizen in 2004.

The weapon he used, which has not been identified, was legally purchased, and Vargas had a valid license, according to police.

Florida, which has the nation's most permissive gun laws, in 2012 became the US state with the greatest number of gun owners.

Read more on:    us

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.