The beautiful young manager, 35, of a Florida Equinox was shot to death along with a popular trainer, 33, at the Coral Gables gym Saturday, Apr. 8. A trainer who had been axed earlier in the day opened fire in front of gym members and then committed suicide before their eyes.
Janine Ackerman, 35, and Marios Hortis, 42, were tragically killed by a former trainer who had been fired from the Coral Gables Equinox in the Village of Merrick Park in Florida. They were shot on Saturday, Apr. 7 around 1 p.m. ET by a man identified by eyewitnesses as Abeku Wilson, 33. He had been a trainer at the Equinox, but had been dismissed earlier in the day. He returned with a gun and shot Janine and Marios. “Janine [Ackerman] was 35 years old and had been a member of our Equinox family for nearly two years,” Equinox confirmed in a statement to PEOPLE. Marios Hortis, 42, was the fitness manager of the gym and identified as the second victim.
Equinox said Janine had been “promoted to General Manager of our club in Coral Gables last August. She was a kind and caring soul, a person we all loved and will deeply miss. Her memory will never be forgotten.” They added that Marios “was with Equinox for more than six years. He was mortally wounded when the shooter entered the club, and died as a result of his injuries. His generous spirit and warm demeanor made him an always welcome presence in our world, one that will be sorely missed.”
Eyewitnesses said the shooter was Abeku who had been a trainer at the gym of years. He had been fired before he came back to the gym with a handgun. Abeku reportedly shot himself after specifically targeting Janine and Marios. “It appears to be an ex-employee, managerial dispute that triggered this shooting,” Miami-Dade Police Detective Alvaro Zabaleta told ABC News.
Abeku had been considered one of the most popular trainers in the gym prior to his dismissal. Some witnesses thought he looked “disheveled” instead of his usually clean-shaven appearance on the morning of the shooting. “Five gunshots,” said Ovi Viera, told The Miami Herald. He had been in the men’s locker room washing his hands when he heard the shots. “It was too loud for it to have been a weight dropping. Within two seconds, people just started running out,” he said.
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