MIAMI -- A personal chef to star athletes and music producers was killed early Tuesday morning during a shooting that Miami Beach police say erupted between two parties in the VIP section of Club Mansion.
Antuan Teasley, 42, died from a gunshot to his upper body.
“He was just a close friend,” Miami Heat point guard Mario Chalmers told reporters Tuesday after learning of Teasley’s death. “He was my chef when I first got out here [to Miami]. So it's tough. My condolences to his family and to him, to his kids.”
Police say they received calls about the shooting inside the popular South Beach club about 3:41 a.m. Sgt. Bobby Hernandez, a police spokesman, said someone fired a gun after an argument broke out between two groups sharing a VIP section.
“There was one side and another side. They got into an argument and there was only one gun, supposedly,” he said.
Witnesses described chaos at the club in interviews with Miami Herald news partner CBS4. A fight broke out and everyone scattered for the exits, though initially many had no idea someone had been shot.
“I was standing in the VIP and there was like a ‘bang’ noise, like a gun, and I looked over right in the VIP and everybody started getting down and running,” Nefratari Tomal told CBS4. “And I was like there’s no way on Earth that this is gunshots. So we’re standing there and then everybody started running and security started coming. ... The DJ was like ‘No it’s not a gunshot, everybody just relax, relax’ and then they cut the music off.”
Teasley, who called himself the “Young Chef,” ran Young Chef Catering and cooked meals for Miami Dolphins and Heat players and other high-profile athletes around the country. A biography on his company’s website says Teasley is a Cleveland native who began working as a chef in South Florida after earning his culinary credentials in 2000.
Teasley listed Brooklyn Nets star Paul Pierce, tennis champion Serena Williams, music producer Timbaland, and unnamed politicians among his clients. Chalmers said he employed Teasley directly. The chef also appears to have been close with Heat guard Norris Cole, who was not made available to reporters after the team’s shoot-around Tuesday morning ahead of Game 3 of the NBA Finals.
Just days ago, Teasley posted a picture of himself on Instagram wearing a Miami Heat championship ring.
Almost immediately after the shooting, friends began posting prayers and condolences on social media.
“So disturbing to wake up to some bad news about a friend!” wrote former Miami Dolphins lineman and University of Miami star Bryant McKinnie on Instagram. “His passion was cooking & he had a very laid back but kind spirit. Sad to see you go homie & praying for ur son, ur twin brother as well as the rest of ur family.”
Hernandez said that when police arrived, club patrons pointed officers to Teasley, who was taken by ambulance to Ryder Trauma Center, where he died. Hernandez said police continued Tuesday to hunt for the shooter, but as of noon detectives did not have any suspects or persons of interest. Police did question “six to eight witnesses,” Hernandez said.
“We’re trying to identify the groups that were there and identify the subjects,” he said.
Mansion spokeswoman Vanessa Menkes said Opium Group, which owns the club and others on South Beach, had no comment about the shooting.