According to The Miami Herald, the incident occurred about 9:30 PM in the Gifford area of Vero Beach. Indian River County Deputies responded to a shooting call and found Deputy Chambliss with a gunshot wound to the chest. He was transported to the Indian River Medical Center, where he died.
In a statement, Indian River County Sheriff Deryl Loar said, “This is a tragic day for the Indian River County Sheriff’s Office. We are actively investigating this homicide as we face the difficult reality of losing one of our own to violence.” He also said “Please pray for the family of Deputy Garry Chambliss and everyone at the Indian River County Sheriff’s Office during this difficult time.”
Indian River County Detectives said the incident happened when off-duty Deputy Garry Chambliss was visiting with his family at a house. A distant cousin of Deputy Chambliss, Makhail Chambliss, was driving when an object was thrown at his car. Makhail Chambliss fired shots in the direction of where the object was thrown and an unidentified suspect fired back.
It was during this exchange of gunfire that off-duty Deputy Garry Chambliss was shot, and it is believed that he was struck by a bullet from the unidentified suspect who was shooting at his cousin. Deputy Chambliss was hit from more than 100 yards away.
Sheriff Loar said that Deputy Chambliss was not the intended victim but rather a victim of a “senseless act of violence.”
Makhail Chambliss has been arrested for discharging a firearm from a vehicle. Investigators are still looking for the suspect who fired the fatal shots.
Indian River County Correctional Deputy Chambliss was a 27-year veteran. He was two and one-half years away from retirement. His nickname ‘Kool-aid’ was honestly earned because he was so well-liked. His smile was infectious and he had a sweet personality, according to WPTV.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Indian River County Correctional Deputy Garry Chambliss, except for Makhail; that dirtbag can rot in prison.