Update: Detectives on scene of suspicious death, arrest made


Detectives with the Indian River County Sheriff’s Office have identified the deceased man as Eric Deffendall (42) of Vero Beach. Tonight, Mark Deffendall (39) is being charged with the homicide of his brother. Father, Rex Deffendall, left both Eric and Mark home around 10:30 A.M. and returned around 2:30 P.M. to find Eric dead of gunshot wounds and no sign of Mark. After a long day of investigation, detectives determined that a fight between the brothers erupted near the hangar in the rear of the family home.

Indian River County Sheriff’s Office Detective Lieutenant Anthony Consalo stated, “It appears the fight continued into the residence, both upstairs and down. The fight ended near the front door with numerous gunshots to the head and body of Eric Deffendall.”

Mark Deffendall was later located at Indian River Medical Center where he was treated for several superficial wounds. Mark was transported to the Indian River County Sheriff’s Office where detectives spent several hours speaking with him. At this time, detectives are charging him with killing his brother, however specific charges were not immediately available. Mark Deffendall will be held without bond until his first appearance in the morning.

Indian River County Sheriff Dery Loar stated, “Our hearts go out to the friends and family of Eric Deffendall tonight. It is difficult losing a loved one and even worse when another family member is involved.”

Original Sheriff’s Office Press Release

Indian River County Sheriff’s Office Detectives and Crime Scene personnel are on scene in the 8500 block of De Havilland Court in Vero Beach. De Havilland Court is in the area commonly referred to as the Aerodrome. Deputies responded to the scene and discovered what is currently being called a suspicious death. More information will be released as it becomes available.

Anyone with information or who may have witnessed anything is encouraged to contact Treasure Coast Crime Stoppers at 1-800-273-TIPS (8477). By contacting Treasure Coast Crime Stoppers, you can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

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