Funeral Home Shooting 'Horrifying': Family

Family of man whose funeral sparked shooting speaks out

By Jeff Burnside
|  Tuesday, Apr 3, 2012  |  Updated 10:58 AM EDT
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Gislaine Elisse and Morva Andre, the mother and sister of 21-year-old Morvin Andre, who memorial sparked a shooting at a Miami-Dade funeral home, speak out for the first time since the shooting. Family attorney Marc Brumer also questions the man's death.

Gislaine Elisse and Morva Andre, the mother and sister of 21-year-old Morvin Andre, who memorial sparked a shooting at a Miami-Dade funeral home, speak out for the first time since the shooting. Family attorney Marc Brumer also questions the man's death.

The family of a man whose memorial Friday night was the lightning rod for a shooting spree outside a northeast Miami-Dade funeral home that left two dead and 12 injured apologized to those who were struck down by bullets Monday.

"Nobody deserves what happened," said Morva Andre, the twin sister of 21-year-old Morvin Andre, in an exclusive interview with NBC 6. "And basically we’re sorry for what happened."

A total of 14 people were shot at Funeraria Latina Emanuel at 14990 W. Dixie Highway at 9:36 p.m., authorities said. Laurore Ornis, 43, of Fort Pierce, and Parterson Dubreus, 27, of North Miami were killed in the shooting, police said.

Of the 12 who were injured, one was a 5-year-old girl.

"I feel very hurt. Very, very, very hurt," said Andre's mother, Gislaine Elisse. She lamented that her friend Ornis had driven from Fort Pierce for the memorial at the funeral home, and leaves behind three children and a handicapped wife unable to work. "You don’t deserve to get shot for something like that. You know? All those people need help," she said. She vowed to help the widow.

Miami-Dade Police say it appears that members of rival gangs came to the funeral, and something set off the violence that broke out after the ceremony.

"It was horrifying. It was crazy. It was just crazy," said Morva Andre.
 
But the family is quick to say the shooting spree, among South Florida's worst in recent history, didn't have to happen. They insist Andre died unnecessarily in a bizarre death March 17 at the Aventura Mall.

NBC 6 obtained an 40-plus page police report that has not yet been made public. In it, Aventura detectives describe what Bloomingdale's store detectives told them: Andre was buying clothes in Bloomingdale's when store security spotted him "acting suspicious," although it’s unclear why.

When Andre used an American Express Platinum credit card, store security called Amex who contacted the cardholder. It belonged to a young woman named Niloufar Badoorally who told Amex she did not give anyone permission to use the card, and felt she may've lost the card earlier at the mall.

Store security, now believing Andre had found the card on the ground and was using it fraudulently, began following him as he left Bloomingdale's and went into Macy's where he bought perfume.

The attorney for the young woman's family later told police she's Muslim and was dating him without her parents knowledge. Badoorally sent Andre several text messages that day discussing the credit card, the attorney said.

After as much as 30 minutes later, plainclothes security personnel chased Andre in the parking garage and, without identifying themselves, asked him to stop and talk. Security personnel told police Andre cussed at them and ran up to the fourth floor of the garage.

One Bloomingdale's loss prevention officer who was trailing Andre by a few seconds said he saw Andre get to the railing, glance over the side briefly, then used both hands to jump over the railing.

When security reached the railing, they saw him lying motionless 32 feet below on a second floor ramp, with his cell phone, hat and shopping bags nearby. Rescue crews later reported very little blood, no broken bones but severe internal head trauma.

He was airlifted to Ryder Trauma where doctors told his mom he was brain dead. He later died.

The Miami-Dade Medical Examiners office ruled it a suicide.

"They lie, they lie," said Elisse. "The only one thing I wanna know: Why my son is die?....My son don’t deserve to die."

When Elisse was reminded police say her son made the choice to jump over the railing, she said "No. If the security don’t chase him, he don’t die. They chase him, they force him to die."

"It’s our position that Morvin Andre did not commit suicide. That he was forced to jump or he was pushed," family attorney Marc Brumer said. "It's very strange."

Brumer blames Bloomingdale's plainclothes store security for failing to identify themselves. "He could have been in fear for his life," he said.

Bloomingdales and Aventura Mall declined to comment. Brumer says he will file a lawsuit probably against both.

Meantime, the search continues for the gunman who used an AK-47 at Andre's memorial. Miami-Dade police say it was gang on gang violence with a lot of innocent, collateral damage. And questions have been raised about whether Andre was part of a gang.

"Morvin was not involved in gangs, no gang activity at all," Morva Andre said. And she says just because several gang members were at his memorial "doesn’t make him a gang member. I’m pretty sure all his friends in high school – we didn’t know they was involved in gangs and stuff like that."

Andre's mom says he called her just minutes before his death to tell her he was buying perfume for her. His body was found with the bottle of perfume, unbroken, next to him in a Macy's bag.

"He said ‘I’m coming back, mommy.'" Elisse said. "So he buy the perfume for me. That’s the last call, the last time I speak to him."

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