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One Dead, Four Others Wounded After Alleged Drive-By Shooting at SoHo Lounge


A bar patron who was asked to leave a SoHo establishment last week allegedly made good on a promise to return with a firearm and is now being charged with first-degree murder for actions authorities say he took upon his return.

Tampa resident Gary Omar Rivera Montanez allegedly began last Saturday night by being removed by bouncers from a local lounge after another patron accused him of aggressively flirting with her to a degree she found uncomfortable.

Witnesses at the lounge told Tampa police that Montanez made comments on his way from the establishment alluding to his possession of a firearm and promising to remember their faces upon his return.

Tampa police say he carried out the threat upon his return at half past four o'clock that morning. Investigators allege that Montanez drove up to the lounge, lowered the driver's side window of his Civic, and opened fire.

Five people lay wounded when the smoke cleared. Among them was Mike Franck a 34-year-old man from Tallahassee whose wound in the chest proved mortal. Police say Franck was uninvolved in the events leading to Montanez's ejection from the bar. The female who complained of Montanez's actions was also wounded.

The Tampa Police Department was quickly alerted to the situation. Officers say they stopped Montanez's vehicle seven minutes after the shooting and discovered a handgun and spent shell casings within it.

According to police, Montanez admitted to the shooting but claimed self defense as his rationale.

The 22-year-old was booked into the Hillsborough County Jail on one count of first-degree murder and four counts of attempted first-degree felony murder. He is being held without bond.

The Law Offices of Bjorn Brunvand have been representing people charged with capital murder, felony drug charges, drunk driving, government fraud, and white-collar crimes for over a quarter century. Contact our office today to discuss your Tampa Bay-area state or federal charges.

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