Former Orlando Police Chief Val Demings, who now represents the 10th Congressional District (which includes west and northwest Orange County) of the U.S. House of Representatives, on Monday led the House in a moment to remember and honor the two Central Florida law enforcement officers who lost their lives.
“I rise today to honor the lives of Master Sgt. Debra Clayton of the Orlando Police Department and Deputy Norm Lewis of the Orange County Sheriff’s Office,” Demings said. "As the former Orlando police chief I had the honor of knowing both Sergeant Clayton and Deputy Lewis. Sergeant Clayton was violently murdered while responding to a call this morning. Deputy Lewis was killed responding to the scene during a search for the suspect."
“As we recognize law enforcement appreciation day, we mourn the deaths of these two public servants. Sergeant Clayton was a fine officer, wife, mother, 42 years young, and had just celebrated her first anniversary with her husband. Deputy Lewis was deeply admired by all of his colleagues. He loved helping people and it showed in his work. He was just 35,” Demings continued. “Mr. Speaker, I respectfully ask that all members join me in honoring and remembering these heroes during this difficult time.”
A moment of silence followed. Demings was joined by several Florida representatives including, Darren Soto, Stephanie Murphy, John Rutherford, Ted Yoho, Matt Gaetz, Brian Mast, Kathy Castor, Charlie Crist, Lois Frankel, Ted Deutch and Al Lawson.
Demings released this statement on Tuesday morning:
“Today, as the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, Orlando Police Department, and countless other law enforcement officers working tirelessly to bring this suspect to justice, we thank them for their service,” said U.S. Representative Val Demings. “Our community will not be terrorized by an individual capable of these horrific actions. My heart today is in Orlando, with my Orlando Police Department family and the Orange County Sheriff’s Officers as they continue to work while mourning the loss of two of their own.”