The man who shot a Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office deputy last week and was later discovered dead, apparently took his own life, the Sentinel has learned.
Kaleb Melton, age 21, who while a teenager was convicted of fatally shooting his stepfather, shot CPSO deputy Walter Mackel during an encounter at an apartment complex in Vidalia on July 25.
Mackel fired back and hit Melton.
A source told the Sentinel that after that initial exchange, and while Melton was hold up in an apartment unit, Melton shot himself in the head and died.
The Louisiana State Police Bureau of Investigations/Alexandria Field Office (LSP AFO), which is investigating the shooting at the request of CPSO, reported that the shooting occurred at approximately 12:15 p.m.
LSP said that the preliminary investigation revealed that the sheriff’s office and the Vidalia Police Department responded to the River Manor Apartments in Vidalia to locate an armed robbery suspect.
Once on the scene, the police encountered Melton and during the “the course of the interaction, gunfire was exchanged. As a result, Melton and a deputy were both shot.”
Mackel was transported to the University Medical Center in Jackson, Miss. CPSO Chief Deputy David Hedrick said Tuesday that Mackel is “in good condition.”
In 2012, when Melton was 14-years-old, he was charged with the second-degree murder of his 37-year-old stepfather, Terry Watson.
Watson was shot twice with a handgun and later died of his wounds.
In 2012, the Sentinel ran a story on the shooting but because Melton was a teenager at the time his name was not released.
Melton reportedly shot his stepfather once in the abdomen and once in the shoulder.
Watson was taken to Natchez and transported via helicopter to a Jackson hospital where he died.
Judge Kathy Johnson set bond at $150,000.
Melton was reportedly sentenced to juvenile life, which meant he would be released no later than his 21st birthday in December of 2018.