Eight Marijuana Plants Found in West Kendall Home Where Police Shootout Happened: Cops

Suspect charged with possessing place to manufacture controlled substance: Police

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A day after a shootout with detectives at a West Kendall home, police said Wednesday that suspect Dell Peter DiGiovanni had been found dead in an apparent suicide. Another body was found inside the residence that was burned Tuesday night, Miami-Dade Police spokesman Det. Alvaro Zabaleta said.

    Eight damaged marijuana plants were found in the West Kendall grow house that was the scene of an officer involved shootout with a trio of suspects that ended with the home on fire and a massive manhunt, police said Thursday.

    The news comes as one of the suspects, 29-year-old Brian Kelly Howell, was charged with possession of a place to manufacture a controlled substance in the incident that began Tuesday night at the home in the 15400 block of Southwest 57th Street, according to a Miami-Dade Police arrest affidavit.

    One of the other suspects, 50-year-old Dell Peter DiGiovanni, was found dead of an apparent suicide in the area of Southwest 48th Terrace and Southwest 147th Place Wednesday.

    Police Search For 3 Men in West Kendall

    [MI] Police Search For 3 Men in West Kendall
    Police said they were searching a neighborhood with K-9 units in West Kendall for three men – who are likely armed – after shots were fired at police. The incident began at 15415 SW 57th St., when narcotics units were investigating a possible grow house at the address. The suspects began firing at the officers, and police said they fired back and retreated for cover.

    VIDEO: West Kendall House on Fire Morning After Shootout

    The third suspect, 28-year-old Michael Steven DiGiovanni may still be at large, though police have yet to identify a burned body that was found in the house early Wednesday.

    West Kendall Perimeter Keeps Some Residents Away From Homes

    [MI] Police Perimeter in West Kendall Keeps Some Residents Away From Homes
    Police sped quickly to the West Kendall neighborhood, and when they arrived they immediately set up a perimeter as they searched for three men. Displaced residents Ashley Diaz, Daniel Cortez and Anthony Guzman spoke about being kept away from their homes.

    The incident began around 7:15 p.m. Tuesday when detectives conducting a narcotics investigation approached the home and came under fire from the suspects, police said.

    As detectives returned fire, the house caught fire and the suspects fled the scene on foot, police said. 

    Howell was caught after police set up a perimeter in the area but a massive manhunt was begun to locate the DiGiovanni's. Residents later found Dell DiGiovanni's body hanging from a tree.

    Authorities waited until daylight Wednesday to enter the grow house, where in addition to the marijuana plants, they found an electrical transformer, two electric fans, one inside wall-mounted air conditioning unit and two light bulb mounts, according to the arrest affidavit.

    Howell admitted to police that he assisted in the cultivation of a marijuana hydroponics lab at the house, the affidavit said. 

    Jail records showed Howell was being held without bond Thursday. It was unknown whether he has an attorney.