Miami Beach

Man Beaten Outside Miami Beach Pizza Place Says He Was Targeted

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Miami Beach Police are investigating after a brawl between several people outside a pizza restaurant left one man injured.

Officers arrived at the Mega Pizza at 865 Collins Avenue just after 1:00 a.m. Saturday where witnesses said 26-year-old Luis Carlos Herrera Quiroz was attacked by a man and was given a bloody nose.

According to a police report, Quiroz was walking along 9th Street with friends when they saw a group of five individuals standing outside the pizza shop. As Quiroz passed by, one of the male suspects became aggressive and struck him several times causing the bloody nose.

Surveillance footage shows the moment the fight broke out.

One witness said she tried to stand between the male suspect and Quiroz, but then one of the female suspects grabbed her by her hair and knocked her to the ground.

Miami Beach Fire Rescue responded and treated Quiroz on the scene. He was later transported to Mount Sinai Hospital.

Quiroz says he was attacked because of his sexual orientation.

“I was celebrating my friend's birthday at a gay bar called Palace, then we left and I started to hear the taunts of these guys treating me as the worst because of my sexual condition.”

He went on to say “...when I tried to defend myself, I was beaten by five people and left on the floor unconscious.”

Quiroz says things escalated to violence when he was punched in the face.

“Now I'm scared... I'm panicking about going out on the street and being beaten again...I live here in Miami, that's what makes me the most angry and sad...I work with my image, I'm a dancer and a Zumba teacher,” Quiroz said.

 Quiroz says he has facial fractures, and brain bleeding.

“Nobody should be surprised. we have an all night party district. We have a 24-hour party district,” Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber said.

Gelber, who is running for re-election is among those calling for a last call rollback to 2 a.m. a measure he feels could curb crime in South Beach. 

Voters  will make their voices heard in a straw poll on Tuesday.

“Let’s get rid of all the all night bars, and let’s just create a live work play, a beautiful place,” Gelber said.

But the proposed rollback has been met with pushback. A group called Citizens for a Safe Miami Beach, backed by major businesses on Miami Beach are campaigning to keep last call at 5 a.m.

“We contribute hundreds of millions of dollars to the economy of Miami Beach,” said one of the protesters.

NBC 6 reached out to Miami Beach Police about the victim’s claims about being targeted and whether they were being investigated and whether there have been any arrests.

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