Little India: Overseas Indian, NRI, Asian Indian, Indian American

Two Suspects Arrested in Miami Over Indian Student’s 2015 Murder

Brandon Figueroa (Left) and Jonathan Rivera-Gunera

Two suspects have been arrested over the murder of an Indian American student in 2015, according to the Miami police.

Brandon Figueroa, 23, and Jonathan Rivera-Gunera, 21, were arrested for alleged first degree murder of Schiharia Aila Sai Kiran, who was shot and later died on June 14, 2015.

Both the suspects were arrested on Aug. 7 and have been held without bond, Miami Herald reported.

Gunera has been in custody since April for multiple criminal charges, including assaulting a pregnant woman, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and mask, written threats to harm a person, and possession of marijuana.

The murder took place three years back when Sai Kiran, 22, was outside his home, taking a phone call when the suspects attacked him in the Little Havana area.

The case was called “Antarctic Cold” until recently, detective Ezra Washington said, according to the publication. About three weeks ago, the police received a tip about the Sai Kiran’s murder. Shortly afterwards, the suspects were arrested and later confessed to the crime, the report cited detectives as saying. Both of them have blamed the other person for shooting Sai Kiran.

“They pointed the finger at each other,” Washington was quoted as saying by the publication.

According to the police, the shooting occurred after the suspects demanded the mobile phone from Sai Kiran. The person who was in a call with the Indian student confirmed hearing a voice saying “give me your cellphone” before the call got disconnected.

Sai Kiran was taken immediately via Miami Fire Rescue to Jackson Memorial Hospital’s Ryder Trauma Center in an extremely critical condition, but died shortly afterwards.

The motive behind the killing is believed to be robbery, according to the police.

Figueroa has confessed to the murder, Patch reported, citing court documents.

“After the defendant confessed, he apologized and said that he didn’t mean for any of this to happen,” court documents stated, according to Patch.

Sai Kiran moved from Hyderabad to Miami a month before the shooting to pursue a master’s degree in information technology from Atlantis University.