Man Accused of Killing Orlando Officer Eludes Cops for 2 Days


It has been two days since an Orlando police officer was shot dead, and while the community continues to grieve, hundreds of law enforcement officers are still searching for the suspected killer.

Orlando police spokeswoman Wanda Miglio said Wednesday morning that investigators were still looking for 41-year-old Markeith Loyd. She declined to give any other updates.

Police posted on Twitter shortly after noon that Crimeline has received 550 tips about Loyd since the Monday morning shooting.

Chief John Mina has assured Orlando residents that investigators are working around the clock tracking down leads.

Authorities set up a command post at Orange County’s emergency operations center and have teams of detectives tracking down leads, he said Tuesday.

The FBI, Homeland Security, Florida Department of Law Enforcement and U.S. Marshals Service have also chipped in, partnering with local agencies to find Loyd.

A SWAT team raided two homes in Lake County on Tuesday and spent most of Monday going door-to-door through an apartment complex in the Rosemont area of Orlando, where Loyd was believed to have fled after the shooting.

Each time, they’ve ended up empty-handed.

On Tuesday, Mina announced the reward for information leading to Loyd’s capture had been increased from $60,000 to $100,000. Officials also emphasized that tipsters can be completely anonymous and still receive the money.

“If you know where he’s at and you call us, 3 o’clock in the morning, 3 o’clock this afternoon, we will have people prepared to dispatch to go get him,” said Barb Bergin, the executive director of Crimeline.

Master Sgt. Debra Clayton was killed Monday morning while trying to confront Loyd outside the Wal-Mart on Princeton Street at John Young Parkway, police said. Authorities had been looking for Loyd since Dec. 13 when he was accused of fatally shooting his pregnant ex-girlfriend, 24-year-old Sade Dixon.

He is also accused of shooting and injuring Dixon’s brother when he came to her aid.

A second law enforcement officer, an 11-year veteran with the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, also died Monday in a crash while responding to the massive manhunt for Loyd.

Norman Lewis, 35, was on his agency motorcycle heading south on Pine Hills Road when a van turning left onto Balboa Drive struck him, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

He died about 2-1/2 hours after Clayton.

A candlelight vigil for both officers was held Tuesday night near a makeshift memorial at the Wal-Mart where Clayton was killed. People have been placing flowers, handmade signs and balloons on a curb just outside the store since Monday afternoon.

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Source: Orlando Sentinel | Christal Hayes and Stephanie Allen