MIAMI, Fla. – “Please help me spread light about my sister’s case! The Miami Police aren’t doing anything and they’re trying to let the person who killed my 17 year old sister get away with it,” posted singer Salomé, also known as Betty Idol, on her Instagram page.
Her sister, Giselle Rengifo, was shot in the head Monday night at a rented Airbnb.
Rengifo was killed in a shooting in the 2700 block of Southwest 20th Street. Michael McGowan, 17, is facing manslaughter charges after he said the shooting was accidental. Police arrived at the scene at 8:23 p.m. Monday to find Rengifo dead at the scene.
Rengifo’s family, including Salomé, believe it was no accident. Giselle’s mother, Catherine and aunt, Tonia Westman reference social media posts of McGowan showing off with the gun.
New since 6pm: Police confirm the house Giselle was found shot dead in was being used as an AirBnB (media statement pending) + just got off the phone with VH1 – they have posted condolences to her older sister and the family from their #CartelCrew social media account. https://t.co/OhRXvZ1kIW pic.twitter.com/cEMyQj2szX
— Christina Vazquez (@CBoomerVazquez) May 22, 2020
Giselle’s mother, Catherine, and other family members want police to do more investigating.
Miami Police Chief Jorge Colina, who hosted a news conference Thursday, said there could be additional charges.
“We are aware of social media posts,” Colina said.
Now there are even more questions about where the shooting took place since short-term rentals like Airbnb were banned during the coronavirus pandemic. Florida’s Gov. Ron DeSantis issued a March 27 executive order that blocked people from renting short-term lodgings and other vacation properties during the public health emergency. The exception was that the rental was only to be used for essential lodging.
Local 10 has reached out to Airbnb for comment. They sent us this statement:
“Our hearts break for those impacted by this tragic incident. We are urgently investigating and stand ready to support Miami Police.”
Devastated and distraught, Catherine Rengifo sobs, “She was a beautiful person. She had a beautiful soul. Why did they take her? Please ask him, ‘Why did he take her from me?’ “
Three witnesses corroborated McGowan’s account that he was holding the gun when it accidentally discharged, shooting Rengifo, 17, in the head.
Regifo’s aunt, Tonia Westman, tells Local 10, “Clearly it is not manslaughter.”
Giselle’s sister, Salomé, wants justice for her sister. She is known for her appearances on VH1′s “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta: Season Five” and “Cartel Crew” and is also famous for singing the hook on Rick Ross’ single “Thug Cry.”
According to her mother, Giselle said that she was going to be staying at a friend’s house, but later learned she was actually at a rented Airbnb. Her mother said she was concerned that she was at the vacation rental because of the pandemic, but her daughter told her she had used disinfectant to clean and she assured her mother all was OK.
Catherine told Local 10 that she let her daughter stay because she thought it would be good for her to spend time with a friend who was visiting from Atlanta since she had been confined because of stay-at-home orders.
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