PINE HILLS, Fla. —A man wearing a security uniform fired multiple shots at a female Orlando, Florida, police sergeant on Monday morning, according to a witness.
Police did not immediately comment on the officer’s condition, although they said on Twitter that she was taken to a hospital. She was hit by nine bullets, the Orlando Fire Department said. Her heart stopped as she was being taken by ambulance to the hospital, but paramedics were able to revive her, officials said.
The shooter is at large.
We have an officer shot and suspect(s) at large. Officer transported to hospital.
— Orlando Police (@OrlandoPolice) January 9, 2017
He was identified by law enforcement sources as Markeith Loyd, 41.
Authorities said an Orange County sheriff’s deputy spotted Loyd fleeing from the scene of the shooting. He fired shots at the deputy, the sheriff’s office said. The bullets struck the deputy’s unmarked SUV. The deputy was not hit.
Loyd then carjacked a vehicle, deputies said. It has since been found abandoned.
Authorities have been searching for Loyd since last month, after deputies found his ex-girlfriend, Sade Dixon, shot and killed. She was pregnant at the time and is survived by her two children, 5 and 7.
— Karla Ray (@KRayWFTV) January 9, 2017
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, after getting a report of the officer-involved shooting outside a nearby Walmart.
“(The shooter) was an average looking dude, he walked by me, had a security vest and everything,” witness James Herman told WFTV. “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.”
Herman said the man continued to shoot behind him as he was running from the scene.
“I hit the ground on the side over here because I wasn’t sure where the shooting was coming from at first,” he said. “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.”
Herman said he heard at least 12 gunshots.
Officials did not give details on the response, but Orlando police appeared to be responding to more than one scene in the immediate area. Nine schools were placed on lockdown as police investigated.