Central Florida Lawmakers Stand United with Orlando Police, Orange County Sheriff’s Office

January 10, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.— U.S. Representative Val Demings, U.S. Representative Darren Soto, and U.S. Representative Stephanie Murphy stand united with the Orlando Police Department, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office as the community mourns the deaths of two dedicated public servants, Master Sgt. Deborah Clayton and Deputy Norman Lewis.

Rep. Demings, Florida’s 10th Congressional District, paid tribute to Sgt. Clayton and Deputy Lewis on the floor of the House of Representatives Monday night with Rep. Murphy, Rep. Soto, Rep. John Rutherford, and other members of the Florida delegation by her side.

The three Representatives released these statements respectively 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.”

“We are heartbroken, again. Just days after the massive shooting at the Fort Lauderdale Airport, we learned two of our members in uniform have lost their lives while protecting and serving the public. Making this even more painful, this tragedy occurred on Law Enforcement Appreciation Day,” said Rep. Darren Soto, Florida’s 9th Congressional District.

“One of the police officers, a 17-year veteran with the Orlando Police Department and devoted mother, Master Sgt. Debra Clayton, was cowardly gunned down in broad daylight. As we tried to comprehend this unspeakable crime, Deputy First Class Norman Lewis later died in a car accident as he joined the search for the suspect. To our law enforcement family: we thank you for all your sacrifices and hard work. The loss of these exceptional public servants reminds us of the urgency to stand up against gun violence by pushing to pass stricter gun laws to make our communities safer in Florida and across our Nation.”

“Central Florida stands united against senseless acts of violence – including those targeted at law enforcement officers and other public servants,” said Rep. Stephanie Murphy. “Monday’s events are another reminder of the risk these community heroes undertake every day to protect and serve. We owe them our deep gratitude and full support. My thoughts and prayers are with the families of Master Sgt. Debra Clayton and Deputy First Class Norman Lewis; the Orlando Police Department and Orange County Sheriff’s Office; and to law enforcement communities throughout central Florida. We join your sorrow.”