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Deputy kills family, alerts fellow deputies over radio, then kills himself

Posted at 1:02 PM, Dec 19, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-19 15:02:43-05

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    Plant City, FL (WFTS ) — Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister says a deputy sheriff killed three people and then killed himself in Plant City on Wednesday.

At approximately 6:42 a.m., a deputy sheriff got on the main channel of the HCSO radio and alerted other deputies that he “caused harm” to his family and he gave them the location of one residence. He went on to say he “caused harm” to another one of this family members and gave directions to that address. During the radio transmission, he said that he was going to kill himself at Plant City High School. A supervisor got on air and tried to calm him down. During this time, three other Hillsborough County deputies located him off of school property. They made every attempt to convince the deputy not to kill himself, Sheriff Chronister said in a news conference on Wednesday. The deputy ultimately killed himself in front of the three deputies.

Deputies are investigating multiple scenes and have obtained search warrants for both residences. There is an adult female and a child female at one location and another adult female at another location. The Sheriff’s Office is working to make next of kin notifications.

The deputy has been with the Sheriff’s Office since 1991 and had no indication of behavioral issues. He had glowing recommendations, according to Sheriff Chad Chronister. The Sheriff went on to say there was “no indication whatsoever that would lead us to believe” that the deputy would do something like this. He retired two years ago but was hired back for security at a local elementary school following the Parkland school shooting. The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office made the decision to hire him back permanently. Sheriff Chronister says the deputy was so happy to be hired back as a full time deputy sheriff.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff has not released the name of the deputy and is working to identify the other victims, believed to be his immediate family members.

There were no students on campus at Plant City High School when the incident occurred and the campus was immediately put on lock-down, which has since been lifted, according to Hillsborough County Schools. Students have been moved to the other side of the school as officials continue their investigation.

A robo-call went out to parents on Wednesday morning letting them know there was an active crime scene near the school but that the school would be on a normal school schedule. They let parents know there was not a threat of an active shooter.

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