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On Tuesday Versace headed out around 8:30 a.m. According to some witnesses, he approached the cafe that morning by an unusual route, coming from the other side of the street, though his home and the cafe were on the same side. "He walked past the entrance, circled back around and then went in," says Stephanie Vanover, the News Cafe's hostess. "It's almost as though he knew someone was following him."
On his return to the house, just as he was opening the ornate wrought-iron gate, Versace was approached suddenly by a white man in his mid-20s. Some witnesses described an ambush-style killing in which the attacker pumped one bullet into Versace's head from behind, then another as he fell to the ground. But two other witnesses, who were later questioned by FBI agents, have told TIME that first Versace appeared to struggle briefly with his attacker over a bag. "The next thing I know, I heard pow, pow, and I ducked on the ground," says Romeo Jacques, 19, a dishwasher.
As the attacker fled along Ocean Drive, at least one horrified onlooker pursued him at a distance. At some point, he swung around and aimed his pistol but didn't fire. Disappearing into a public parking garage, the shooter got into a red 1995 Chevrolet pickup, changed clothes, then fled again on foot. At the sound of the gunfire, meanwhile, Versace's companion D'Amico had rushed from inside the house to find the designer face up on the pavement in a spreading pool of his own blood. At the University of Miami's Jackson Memorial Hospital, doctors declared him dead. Ballistics tests later found that the gun that killed Versace was the same one that had killed two of the earlier victims.
Though it now had stolen South Carolina plates, the pickup was quickly identified as the one belonging to the murdered New Jersey caretaker. It had been parked in the garage almost five weeks. Inside the truck were Cunanan's passport and a check with his name printed on it. Also inside were eyeglasses, a jacket and an expensive wallet, all belonging to Lee Miglin, the Chicago developer. A ticket stub found in the truck was traced to a shop where, on May 12, Cunanan had pawned a gold coin belonging to Miglin--an indication, FBI agents believe, that Cunanan is almost broke.
"I wouldn't call the case a mystery, because he leaves behind voluminous amounts of evidence," says an FBI agent involved in the chase. But suddenly what had been a frustrated and some say haphazard manhunt became a furious one. The FBI offered a $10,000 reward for information leading to Cunanan's arrest. On Saturday night, Miami Beach police said they were exploring the possibility that he may be masquerading as a woman to elude capture. "He may have shaved all of his body hair to enhance this appearance," said a spokesman. Cunanan was fingered as a possible suspect in two other murders in the Miami area. He has been ruled out as a suspect in the killing of Silvio Alfonso, 44, a Cuban-born physician whose body was found on Thursday in Miami Springs. But police are still investigating whether Cunanan may have been connected to the murder of a gay man, Casey Patrick Sigler, 41, who was beaten to death in his apartment on May 12. Neighbors say he came home that night with a man who fit Cunanan's description and that his car was also stolen.