A manhunt is underway in the Upstate after an argument ended with a deadly shooting early Saturday morning in Woodruff.
Police say it happened around 4 a.m. in the 400 block of Sharpe Street. Cecil Gilliam was a 40-year-old veteran and father to 10 kids. Tragically, early Saturday morning his life was cut short when he was murdered inside of a Woodruff home.
“He does so much wonderful stuff and to be shot in cold blood for no reason? I mean it is just, something has to be done,” said Marquintez Ferguson, the victim’s oldest son. “You got 10 kids that you just left abandoned. You stole their father from them.”
Gilliam was gunned down just feet from his own home in his family’s longtime neighborhood and police say Adriel Garnett is the suspected gunman. Police were told Garnett and Gilliam were in an argument, before the victim was shot multiple times. By the time officers arrived, he was dead.
Gilliam served over a decade in the US Navy. “He would tell me all of his stories. And me, I used to have his old medals that he gave to me when I was a kid,” Ferguson recalled.
His family says he was a good man, husband and father, dedicated to his community. His youngest child was only 5-years-old.
“Right now he just thinks daddy’s not home right now. But after a while it will resonate in his mind,” Ferguson added. “He loves his family. That’s all he cares about is family. He always told me that growing up, family first.”
Woodruff Police issued warrants for Garnett’s arrest for murder. They haven’t been able to find him since it happened. Police found the car that was used to leave after the crime but they never found the gun.
Police say he may be headed to the Goose Creek or Columbia areas and is considered armed and dangerous. His last known address was in Goose Creek.
Gilliam’s family is hoping for justice. They say he knew Garnett, but they didn’t know what the argument was about. They only know Gilliam didn’t deserve to die as he did.
“A great man all around, just day to night he was the same guy all day and if he could lend a helping hand, he would,” his son said. “I want what’s right to be done.”
If you know where Garnett is call 911 or Crime Stoppers at 1-888-crime SC.