Florida Police Hunt Suspect in ‘Gruesome’ Machete Killings of Wife and Child

April 2, 2019 Updated: April 2, 2019

Police in Florida are searching for a man suspected of killing his wife and 10-year-old daughter in a vicious attack with a machete.

Noel A. Chambers, 57, has been the subject of a manhunt by police since investigators found the mutilated bodies of the victims at a Miami Gardens residence on March 30, the Miami Herald reported.

“It was pretty gruesome,” a law enforcement official told the newspaper. “I’ve been doing this job a long time and I’ve never seen anything like this before.”

The body of Chambers’ wife, Lorrice Harris, was found on the back porch of the apartment, according to the paper. Investigators found the body of his young daughter inside.

Both were pronounced dead at the scene.

Chambers’s 29-year-old daughter, Shanalee Chambers, was also found outside the apartment, suffering from multiple wounds. 

The Miami Herald reported she was taken to a hospital in critical condition.

“That scene was terrible it was just heart-wrenching to see what occurred at that location,” Miami Gardens Police Chief Delma Noel-Pratt told reporters Monday, according to ABC. “These two individuals did not deserve that. His oldest daughter didn’t deserve to be in the hospital right now, trying to recover from wounds that she received after he took it upon himself to take a machete and go slicing up their bodies.”

A Witness Speaks

A witness at the scene said Chambers attacked his daughter with a machete, WSVN reported.

“Why would you murder, like, slaughter your child?” the witness told WSVN. “The way her body was down, she didn’t see it coming.”

Frantz June, the parent of a child who went school with the slain 10-year-old, expressed shock at the brutal double homicide.

“I can’t even put my head around it,” June told WSVN. “How do you kill your own people? Your own kid.”

Investigators have not officially released a motive for the attack, but family members speaking at a press conference Monday said Chambers’s wife had told him she wanted to end their marriage.

“We believe the trigger was she wanted a divorce from him,” said Ernie Saunders, Harris’s brother, according to the Miami Herald.

Miami-Dade County Public Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho said he found the murders “infuriating and devastating.”

“This is so wholly unnatural and inexcusable,” Carvalho said Sunday on Twitter. “I pray for this child’s soul and that peace is found after death, that this innocent child did not experience in life.”

‘No Place For You To Hide’

Chambers, who police said was known by the nickname “Massive,” is wanted on multiple charges including murder and attempted murder.

Speaking at Monday’s press conference, Chief Delma Noel-Pratt and Mayor Oliver Gilbert vowed to catch the fugitive killer.

“If you did this, there is no place for you to hide,” said the mayor, according to the Miami Herald. “You’re not one of us. It’s a matter of humanity. This can not be allowed to stand. He has to get caught.”

Chief Noel-Pratt said, “If you are knowingly harboring this guy, you’re just as bad as him.”

A tip led Miami Gardens police and SWAT team officers to swarm an abandoned building Monday, but Chambers was not there.

“The manhunt continues,” Carlos Austin, the department’s public information officer, told ABC News. “We received a credible tip and we searched an abandoned building this afternoon, to no avail.”

Miami Gardens police have called on anyone with information about Chambers’ whereabouts to contact the authorities. 

Police have offered a reward of up to $3,000 for information leading to an arrest.

“We need to get him off the streets. If he could do this to his wife and his own 10-year-old daughter, he will do it to someone else,” Noel-Pratt said, according to ABC. “We are putting a lot of resources into finding this guy. Help us get him off the streets.”

Chambers has no criminal history in Florida, according to state records cited by the Miami Herald.

He faces two counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted murder, according to police.

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