Orlando Police Sergeant Killed in Line of Duty; Manhunt Underway for Suspect

Orlando police officer fatally shot; another killed in crash during manhunt

Orlando police officer fatally shot; another killed in crash during manhunt

Several law enforcement officers swarmed the area, and Orlando police said motorists should avoid the area.

The officer who was gunned down, a 17-year veteran of the force, was identified as Master Sgt. Debra Thomas Clayton.

"The Orlando Police Department family is heartbroken today", the department said on its Twitter feed, which also showed a video of officers escorting a USA flag-draped gurney. He also is a suspect in last month's shooting death of his 24-year-old pregnant ex-girlfriend.

Fifteen schools in the area have been put on lockdown as police continue a manhunt to bring Loyd into custody. OPD is offering a $60,000 reward for information leading to his arrest. Loyd is also accused of allegedly shooting and killing his pregnant ex-girlfriend Sade Dixon in December.

Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings and Orlando Police Chief John Mina were also at the news conference.

"There will be a large law enforcement presence in that area until we can determine he is not there", Mina said.

Loyd could face charges of first-degree murder of a law enforcement officer.

Orange County Sheriff's Deputy First Class Norman Lewis was struck and killed by a vehicle in Orlando, Fla. on January 9, 2017.

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Across Central Florida, tributes poured out in social media for Clayton and the Orange County sheriff's deputy, killed in the traffic accident.

Moments after the shooting, a deputy spotted Loyd at an apartment complex and fired at the deputy's cruiser.

The suspect was identified by police as Markeith Loyd.

"Sergeant Clayton was one of the first officers to respond to us in our most dire time of need". That's a youth mentoring program that helps middle and high school students "who face social, economic and academic challenges in an effort to set them on successful paths for their future", the city website said. When she approached him, he fired multiple shots at Clayton, who was wearing body armor, Mina said. A large-scale manhunt is underway to apprehend the man who is considered "armed and unsafe".

"She gave her life protecting the community she loved. If you don't have to be out, don't be out", she said at a morning news conference.

The manhunt was being conducted where he abandoned the vehicle. Two minutes later, police received a call of an officer shot. "She's been shot down in Pinehills".

Clayton's funeral will be Saturday afternoon in Orlando, Mina said today.

Mayor Buddy Dyer said it was an "official day of mourning".