A man and woman are facing charges after police said they armed a man at gunpoint and fled from officers before crashing into a funeral home in Miami over the weekend.
Joseph Pereira, 36 and Mercedes Ariosa, 24, were arrested in connection with the Saturday night incident, Miami-Dade Police officials said.
According to arrest reports, the incident began when Pereira approached a man who was sitting in his car in the area of Northwest 27th Avenue and Northwest 42nd Street and demanded the man's property.
The victim refused but multiple unidentified suspects pulled him out of his car and threw him to the ground, the reports said.
Ariosa got in the victim's car and tried to flee but was unsuccessful, the reports said.
Pereira pulled out a gun and pressed it against the victim's stomach, and took several items from the victim, the reports said.
Officers responded to the robbery scene and saw red pickup truck that they tried to stop, but the truck fled, the reports said.
The truck was going at a high rate of speed and weaving in and out of traffic before it was involved in a crash with another car in the area of Northwest 7th Street and Northwest 35th Avenue in Little Havana, the reports said.
One of the vehicles crashed into a sign at a funeral home, narrowly missing the building, as a service was underway inside.
"It was almost like an explosion," said witness Ed Flores, who was attending the service. "The lights went off in here, so yeah, we were like, what just happened?"
Flores said the service was stopped and everyone watched as police rushed to the scene.
"We could see all the cops, they were actually chasing the individual that took off on foot," Flores said. "It was a pretty crazy experience."
Pereira and Ariosa were taken into custody a short time later.
Both are charged with armed robbery and attempted armed robbery carjacking. Pereira is also charged with fleeing and eluding a police officer, driving with a license permanently revoked, and resisting an officer without violence.
Pereira and Ariosa were being held without bond Monday, Miami-Dade jail records showed. Attorney information wasn't available.
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