On a day when agencies celebrated National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day, Orlando Police and Orange County Sheriff’s Office mourned.
Master Sgt. Debra Clayton of the Orlando Police Department was fatally shot while pursing a man who was a suspect in a murder investigation. Shortly after her death, an Orange County Sheriff’s Deputy First Class Norm Lewis was killed in a crash pursing the suspect.
Several law enforcement agencies expressed their condolences through social media as the news spread across the state and the nation.
But in the midst of so much sadness, there were some smiles to be shared, though with heavy hearts. Community members brought gifts and food to local law enforcement departments to celebrate National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. Some departments posted photos to Facebook expressing gratitude for the appreciation shown to them.
In a separate post, Sarasota Police Department expressed heartbreak for the lives lost in Orlando while thanking a local business for a cake that read “Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. Thank you!”
The manhunt continues with a $60,000 reward offered for information on the shooting suspect, Markeith Lloyd.
In a Monday afternoon press conference, Orlando police Chief John Mina asked Lloyd to turn himself in so there could be a peaceful resolution.
Schools were placed on lock-downs, and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer declared a day of mourning in the city, according to the Associated Press.