A vacation rental on the beach sounded like a good idea – until they arrived and discovered police investigating a report of men on a balcony pointing assault rifles at tourists walking below.
A citizen had noticed the men pointing rifles and taking pictures from the balcony of a penthouse in Miami Beach Friday, September 16, and called 911, according to CBS Miami.
Witness Chris Clayborne said, “I did see a handful of different officers with rifles, pistols, shotguns, the whole nine. It was the real deal.”
UPDATED INFORMATION BELOW (09/19/16 – 9:00 pm est)
ABC Local 10 News said all three men were charged with improper exhibition of a firearm, and walked out of jail Saturday after posting a $1,000 bond.
Ernesto Rodriguez, with the Miami Beach Police Department, stated, “Our officers quickly saturated the area, established a perimeter… when it was safe to do so, we made entry into that apartment that is connected to the rooftop. Inside there were four males which were immediately detained. We also have recovered an assault rifle within that unit with lots of ammunition.”
Items police discovered inside included a switch-blade knife, an AR-15 rifle equipped with a long distance scope and 500 rounds of ammunition. Also found inside the unit was drug paraphernalia and cocaine, which Youssef admitted belong to him.
Four men were arrested, but one is reportedly a juvenile so is not named. The 3 adults were identified as Mohamed Azab Youssef, 39, Artur Schaback, 28 and Ivan Suhharev, 28. Schaback was wearing a mask over his face, and he and Suhharev were taking turns with the rifle as they took pictures of each other pointing the gun at the people.
ABC Local 10 News reported that the three men were in the Mohamed Azab Yousseff’s penthouse, and the gun belonged to Yousseff as well.
WSVN News: Suhharev and Schaback have been charged with improper exhibition of a weapon or firearm. Youssef has been charged with cocaine possession and hashish possession with intent to sell.
Tourists arriving for their vacation were greeted with police cars and yellow crime tape, making them have second thoughts about coming to the beach.
“Uber driver drops us off and literally drops us off right on the crime scene. Not sure what’s taking place cops everywhere yellow tape everywhere they’re pushing us away from our hotel we were staying at,” Clayborne said.
Another tourist, D.J. Richardson, said he really started panicking. “I was like, I really don’t feel safe here.”
Police had to shut down traffic on several streets during the investigation, but it was reopened around 3:30 in the afternoon.
According to facebook posts, the trio took a trip together to Italy in February, and are all originally from Estonia. Yousseff goes by “Ray Yosef” on Facebook, and wrote that he is an “entrepreneur, natural philosopher, and believer.”
Sign up to get breaking news alerts from Dennis Michael Lynch.
Mets Give Honor of First Pitch to London’s Muslim Mayor