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Man fatally shot Palm Beach County Fire Rescue captain in stomach while selling him gun, police say

J.B. Rind, who promised friend James Gilliard 'deal of his lifetime,' now faces manslaughter charge
J.B. Rind, arrested in fatal shooting of James Gilliard
Posted at 7:52 AM, Nov 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-05 12:14:56-05

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — A Palm Beach Gardens man has been arrested after he promised a Palm Beach County fire captain the "deal of his lifetime" but instead fatally shot his friend while showing him a gun, police said.

J.B. Rind was arrested Wednesday in connection with the shooting death of James Gilliard, Palm Beach Gardens police Maj. Paul Rogers said Wednesday.

Rind, 63, faces charges of manslaughter and improper exhibition of a firearm.

The shooting happened Monday night at Rind's home on Artesa Way South.

According to a Palm Beach Gardens police report, Rind called 911 to say that he "shot his friend in the stomach while showing him a firearm."

Gilliard was rushed to St. Mary's Medical Center in West Palm Beach, where he was pronounced dead. The 48-year-old husband and father had worked for Palm Beach County Fire Rescue for 21 years.

James Gilliard, Palm Beach County Fire Rescue captain shot to death
Palm Beach County Fire Rescue Capt. James Gilliard was shot to death in Palm Beach Gardens.

Rind, who buys and sells jewelry, told police he went to dinner with Gilliard that evening before driving Gilliard back to Rind's home. Promising to make Gilliard the "deal of his lifetime," Rind said he was going to give Gilliard his two guns because Rind was planning to move to Mexico.

According to the report, Rind said he was presenting the gun to Gilliard to show him that the gun was empty -- or so he claimed -- when he accidentally shot Gilliard in the stomach from less than 4 feet away.

Rind told police that he had only been at a shooting range four times before the incident.

Upon reviewing the 911 call, detectives learned that Rind told the police dispatcher that there was nothing in the gun. However, when officers found the gun on top of the desk where Rind placed it after the shooting, they found two live rounds, one of which had been discharged.

Police said Rind and Gilliard had only ordered a Diet Coke and one glass of Merlot at dinner that evening. Rind said he didn't have any alcoholic beverages and that it was Gilliard who drank the wine.

A procession was held for Gilliard earlier Wednesday, with law enforcement and fire-rescue personnel escorting the body along Interstate 95.

Rind appeared in court Thursday morning, when a judge set his bond at $20,000. The judge also ruled that Rind can't have any contact with Gilliard's family and must surrender all of his guns and his passport within 24 hours.