St. Lucie County Sheriff's Deputy Shot and Killed During Traffic Stop

Sgt. Gary Morales shot and killed during traffic stop

By Brian Hamacher
|  Thursday, Feb 28, 2013  |  Updated 12:28 PM EDT
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St. Lucie County Sheriff's Office

Sgt. Gary Morales

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A St. Lucie County Sheriff's deputy was shot and killed during a traffic stop near Fort Pierce Thursday morning, authorities said.

Sgt. Gary Morales, 35, a 13-year agency veteran, was shot and killed at 9:28 a.m. in the 3200 block of Naylor Terrace, the St. Lucie County Sheriff's Office told WPTV.

One suspect is in custody, St. Lucie Sheriff Ken J. Mascara said.

Authorities said deputies had stopped the suspect in unincorporated St. Lucie County and the man got out of his vehicle and opened fire, hitting Morales as he sat in his patrol car.

Morales was taken to Lawnwood Regional Medical Center and Heart Institute where he was pronounced dead.

A 13-year veteran of the agency, Morales had just been promoted to sergeant on Jan. 18.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with his family," Sheriff Mascara said in a statement.

The suspect hasn't been identified and authorities are still investigating the incident.

The shooting happened just hours after a Port St. Lucie Police officer was shot while responding to a home for a domestic dispute Wednesday night. That officer is expected to survive.

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