Arrest Made in Mass Shooting at Miami-Dade Banquet Hall That Killed 3, Injured 20

Davonta Barnes, 22, was booked into the Miami-Dade jail late Thursday night on three counts of first-degree murder and 20 counts of attempted first-degree murder

NBC Universal, Inc.

A man has been arrested in connection with a mass shooting at a northwest Miami-Dade banquet hall that left three people dead and 20 injured in May.

Davonta Barnes, 22, was booked into the Miami-Dade jail late Thursday night on three counts of first-degree murder and 20 counts of attempted first-degree murder.

Barnes, a native of Miami Gardens, was being held without bond Friday. Attorney information wasn't available.

Davonta Barnes (Miami-Dade Police Department)

The shooting took place just after 12:30 a.m. on May 30 at a release party for a local rap artist at El Mula banquet hall, located at 7630 Northwest 186th Street.

According to an arrest report, Barnes admitted to acting as a lookout for the shooters, telling investigators he spoke with the other suspects involved before the shooting took place.

Police said Barnes told them he drove to the scene in his mother's Nissan Altima before the shooting, and informed other suspects that one of the intended victims was at the scene.

The Miami-Dade Police Department said two people initially died at the scene and another died later at an area hospital. The victims were identified as Clayton Dillard and Desmond Owners, who were both 26-years-old, and 32-year-old Shaniqua Peterson.

“My son died right here, he laid right here like this, and no one helped him!” said Clayton Dillard, Sr., whose son died in the shooting. “You killed my son, you took my heart, you broke my home, you stole from me, imagine this happen to any one of you all, man.”

Rodney Thomas has watched his daughter, Kadedra Thomas, recover slowly from being shot three times that night.

“I was very happy ... there’s a sense of relief," Thomas said in response to the arrest. "I was happy that progress is being made in catching these guys."

Nearly a month after three men opened fire on a crowd of people outside a banquet hall in northwest Miami-Dade, the 911 calls documenting the chaos have been released.

Angelica Green, the mother of one of the victims, said her son called her in the middle of the night to tell her he was shot and on his way to the hospital.

"He called us frantic, telling us he had been shot, that it hurts, it hurts and that he loves us and wants us to know," Green told NBC 6. "My husband is like 'no stay with us, stay with us.' We hop in the car and we're talking to him to keep him alert."

MDPD Director Freddy Ramirez said it appeared to be a targeted attack. People were standing outside the building when three shooters drove up in a white Nissan Pathfinder and began shooting into the crowd with assault rifles and handguns.

"This was a despicable act of gun violence, a cowardly act, " said Ramirez.

NBC 6's Julie Leonardi has the latest on what some leaders in South Florida say need to be done to fix the growing problem of gun violence.

Miami-Dade Police officials said several people were standing outside when the gunmen began shooting indiscriminately into the crowd.

Separate surveillance footage released by police showed the three gunmen getting out of the Pathfinder armed and wearing masks, then getting back in the SUV and fleeing the scene after the shooting.

The day after the shooting, police confirmed that the Pathfinder was discovered submerged in a canal in the area of 154th Street and Northwest 2nd Avenue. The vehicle had been reported stolen on May 15.

Several groups who were in the parking lot were armed and began shooting back at the gunmen as they fled the scene, police said.

Contact Us