Officer Fatally Shot in Orlando, Gunman Still at Large
ORLANDO, FL (WFTV) – An Orlando police officer shot three times Monday outside a Pine Hills-area Walmart, has died, the Orlando Police Department said.
The officer, who has not been identified, was carried out from Orlando Regional Medical Center in a flag draped coffin and was driven from the hospital accompanied by a police escort.
According to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, the man believed to have shot the officer is also wanted in connection with the shooting death of his pregnant ex-girlfriend.
According to a witness at the scene, the female Orlando police officer was shot numerous times Monday morning by a man wearing a security uniform.
Dozens of police vehicles descended on the area around the intersection of Pine Hills Road and North Lane, just south of Royal Oaks and Pineview apartments on a report of an officer-involved shooting.
“(The shooter) was an average looking dude, he walked by me, had a security vest and everything,” witness James Herman told Channel 9. “I was walking down the sidewalk, right past the officer, and I heard her tell him to stop, or whatever, and he shot her. He shot her down.
“He took off running. It’s unreal.”
He said the man continued to shoot behind him as he was running from the scene.
The officer was hit three times, officials said.
Her heart stopped as she was being taken by ambulance to the hospital, but paramedics were able to revive her, the Orlando Fire Department said.
An Orange County sheriff’s deputy spotted the suspected gunman, Markeith Loyd, at the intersection of North Lane and Pine Hills Drive and followed him to a nearby apartment complex, officials said.
The man shot at the deputy, hitting his unmarked SUV twice, and then carjacked a second vehicle and continued to flee, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office said.
He abandoned the vehicle near the intersection of Rosemont Avenue and Cinderlane Parkway and fled on foot, deputies said.
She was taken to the hospital, but officials did not immediately release her condition.
“As he was running, he was shooting back, he was shooting backwards,” Herman said. “I hit the ground on the side over here because I wasn’t sure where the shooting was coming from at first.
“I thought he was a security guard for Walmart.”
The officer had been shopping in the store and was putting bags into the trunk of her vehicle when she was approached by another shopper, Herman said.
“The customer walked up to her and said that someone they were looking for, wanted, was in the store in the line to check out,” he said. “She went in there, I guess, to confront him. As she was going back to Walmart, he was coming out, and he shot her.”
He said the gunman fired at least 12 gunshots.
Orlando police appeared to be responding to more than one scene in the immediate area.
Pine Hills Road was shut down in the area of the shooting and the Orlando Police Department urged drivers to avoid Princeton Street and John Young Parkway.
The shooter remained at large and is considered armed and extremely dangerous, OPD said.
A flag-draped coffin was seen being removed from Orlando Regional Medical Center and was then given a police escort from the hospital.
Loyd, 41, has been on the run since the Dec. 13 shooting of 24-year-old Sade Dixon, who was shot to death outside her home in the 6000 block of Long Peak Drive.
Dixon was a mother of two and was pregnant at the time of the shooting, police said.
Loyd, a convicted felon, has been arrested in Orange County 20 times since 1994, court records said.
Dixon’s brother, Ronald Steward, was also shot and critically injured when he tried to come to her aid, investigators said.