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Palm Beach County Firefighter Fatally and Negligently Shot by Friend with Handgun

PALM BEACH GARDENS, FLORIDA — A Florida man who was showing a revolver that he planned to give or sell to the Palm Beach County fire captain is now charged with manslaughter in his death.

Jay Rind, 63, and Captain James Gilliard, 48, had dinner at a restaurant on Monday evening and returned to Rind’s home to look at two guns that Rind planned to give or sell to Gilliard. As Rind was showing the Taurus Model 87 .38 caliber revolver, it fired. Gilliard was approximately 4 feet away when he was struck in the torso by a bullet which proved to be fatal.

Rind called 911 and reported shooting his friend. Police found the revolver on top of a desk, where Rind told them he had left it after the incident, with a fired round and one or two live rounds in the cylinder.

The police report indicated that Rind planned to move to Mexico and wanted to give or sell his two guns to Gilliard, with Rind referring to it as “the deal of his lifetime”. A second gun was found in a desk drawer and a third in the bedroom. Rind’s wife confirmed that the two had met to discuss the purchase of the guns.

Rind is charged with manslaughter and was placed in jail under a $20,000 bond.  Circuit Judge Laura Johnson also ordered him to surrender travel documents, including his passport.

A statement from Palm Beach County Fire Rescue said, “Our hearts are broken. Our fire rescue family is working together to support his family at this difficult time.”

This is a tragic reminder of the devastating results when firearm safety rules are ignored and firearms are handled carelessly. The life of one man is over, the life of the other changed forever, with families, friends, coworkers, and an entire community left to deal with the loss and grief that resulted from one careless and negligent act.

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