Florida Sheriff’s Deputy Killed While Serving Domestic Violence Injunction

Smith - Myers
Photos: Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office

A Florida sheriff’s deputy was shot and killed Tuesday morning after serving a domestic violence injunction. The deputy had completed the service process and was shot while walking away.

Okaloosa County Deputy Sheriff Bill Myers, 64, was dispatched Tuesday morning to serve a domestic violence injunction, according to the Newport Richey Patch. Deputy Myers had finished the service process and walked outside where he was shot multiple times in the back and in the back of his head.

The suspect, 33-year-old Joel Dixon Smith, drove to the Comfort Inn and Suites in Niceville, Florida. He barricaded himself in a motel room, the Pulse Gulf Coast reported. Following a 90-minute standoff, Smith came out of his room holding a weapon. Deputies fired on Smith. An ambulance transported Smith to a local hospital where he later died from his wounds. No other officers were injured in the encounter.

Deputy Myers had retired from the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Department in November, 2013, after 25 years of service to the community. In January, he returned to part-time service with the department and worked in the civil process service section.

“Deputy Myers has been a treasured part of this agency’s family since 1989,” Sheriff Larry Ashley said in a statement released on the department’s Facebook page. “He served this community with distinction for decades. He was loved, admired, and respected for his dedication to the law enforcement profession.”

“He loved photography and he had an ability to make those around him smile, especially his young granddaughter who he adored and took to Disney World as often as he could,” Sheriff Ashley said while continuing his tribute to Myers. “We pray for his soul and for his family and we ask that the community pray for them as well, and for all the men and women who have the courage in these troubled times to put their lives on the line for others.”

The sheriff expressed his gratitude to those who reached out to support the family of Deputy Myers and all of his law enforcement officers. He also thanked the other police agencies who assisted in the investigation.

Myers was the 95th law enforcement officer to be killed in the line of duty this year, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page. He was the 27th to be killed by gunfire this year.

His death follows the murder of several other police officers and deputies in recent weeks including Harris County Deputy Darren Goforth who was killed in Houston, Texas, on August 28th; Chicago area Fox Lake Police Lieutenant Joseph Cliniewicz on September 1; and Kentucky State Trooper Cameron Ponder on September 13th.

Bob Price serves as senior political news contributor for Breitbart Texas and a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX