"Lying in the middle of the street were the bodies of two young white men. They weren't moving. They had been badly beaten.
"While we were watching, a late-model green car . . . deliberately drove over one of the bodies. I saw it driven over him three times . . .
"Then, the car backed off and sped around.
"The crowd cheered and yelled. There were children no more than 5 or 6 years old standing in the doorways watching.
"A police van approached and a SWAT team jumped out to pick up the men. The crowd started throwing bottles and bricks. Some of them were shooting at the police from the windows of the nearby apartment buildings. The police returned the fire. They picked up the two men and raced off . . .
"A young man with me, I only knew him as Cornell . . . said the two men had been pulled from their car after they had driven down the street shooting a pistol. But there was no way to verify the story."
Metro Police Officer Frank Rossi was badly beaten as he tried to help a young white couple who were dragged from their van by a crowd of young black men.
"They were on the ground being kicked. They had dragged the girl out and were kicking the s--- out of her.
"As I tried to reach for my gun, a guy picked up a huge coral rock and slammed it down on my thigh. They were all kicking me and calling me names. I was down on my back."
The young couple ran to their van and got away while the crowd's attention was diverted. Rossi managed to struggle free and make it to his car.
"I had to drive on the wrong side of the road. Rocks were hitting my car. Every window is broken. I couldn't believe it. I still don't believe what's going on. I'm just lucky to be alive."
Several people caught in the rioting phoned in reports to the Miami Herald. Among them:
Jim Davis: "I almost got killed last night . . . I got chased and my car completely demolished.
". . . I heard people yelling, screaming . . . rocks started hitting the car. Rocks came in from the passenger side. The front windshield on the right's gone, the back window's gone, the whole right side of the car's bashed in.
"The police had put up a roadblock . . . and I couldn't get around it. I went into a U-turn. But in the middle of the turn my car stalled and they came running at me.
"I heard them scream 'Honky.' I got the car into neutral and knocked them out of the way because they go in front of the car. I would say three of four.
"I heard gunfire . . . I saw a police officer and I screamed. 'What should I do?' He said, 'I've been shot at all night. Do what you have to to get out. If they get in front of you or whatever, do what you have to do to save you life.'"