Police Searching for "Armed and Dangerous" Suspect

Felipe Torrealba, 22, of Palm Coast remains at large after eluding police Monday

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Felipe Torrealba, 22, of Palm Coast remains at large after eluding police Monday. (Published Monday, Jan 2, 2012)

    Police said they are trying to track down an "armed and dangerous" suspect who eluded police after a Sweetwater traffic stop led to officers' gunfire Monday morning.

    Felipe Torrealba, 22, of 35 Roundtree Drive in Palm Coast remains at large after driving off in his black Mercedes-Benz, crashing into another vehicle, and then fleeing on foot, police said.

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    Investigators said that officers stopped the Mercedes, which also held 23-year-old Don Drey St. Phar, in front of Florida International University at 5:36 a.m.

    During the stop at SW 109th Avenue and SW 8th Street, Torrealba ran towards the driver's side of the car and "armed himself with a gun," Miami-Dade Police said.

    Sweetwater Police fired at the suspects, according to Florida Highway Patrol officials.

    "I just heard a thump, a loud thump and I woke up," said Carlos Gamundi, who lives in the area.

    St. Phar remained on the scene but Torrealba fled, Miami-Dade Police said, and subsequently "one of the shots that were fired struck the window of a vehicle that was traveling on SW 107th Avenue and SW 8th Street," with the shattered glass giving that driver minor cuts.

    Torrealba was driving east on SW 8th Street when he hit a vehicle at the intersection with SW 99th Place -- and that collision in turn caused the struck vehicle to strike three more vehicles on SW 8th Street, Miami-Dade Police said.

    Torrealba took off running, and a police spokesman said they believe that he was injured in the crash and is trying to seek help.

    He has multiple neck tattoos and gold teeth, police said.

    "If they see anyone in the neighborhood they don't recognize that perhaps has injuries, we believe he may have gotten into the canal, if he's wet. Immediately call police, do not confront him, call police," said Miami-Dade Police spokesman Javiar Baez.

    The occupants of the struck vehicles are all in stable condition in area hospitals, police said.

    St. Phar has not been charged, police added.

    Miami-Dade, Sweetwater and Hialeah police have all been involved in the search for Torrealba, and police said they are still investigating.

    Police ask anyone with information to call Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS or 1-866-471-8477, or visit www.crimestoppersmiami.com and select "Give a Tip."