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Suspect in Florida police officer's slaying captured

Reuters

(Reuters) - The suspect in the killing of an Orlando, Florida, police officer this month was captured on Tuesday, authorities said, ending an extensive manhunt.

Markeith Loyd, 41, was wanted in the fatal shooting of Master Sergeant Debra Clayton on Jan. 9. The shooting took place as police were trying to capture Loyd for the December murder of his pregnant former girlfriend.

"We've got him! Markeith Loyd in OPD custody," the Orlando Police Department said on Twitter. Authorities had offered a $100,000 reward for information leading to his capture.

Online video footage showed Loyd being hustled into police headquarters by sheriff's deputies and police, some of them masked. "They beat me up," he shouted to reporters outside the building.

Clayton, a decorated 17-year veteran of the Orlando Police Department, was shot while responding to a sighting of Loyd at a Walmart.

She exchanged fire with Loyd, who was wearing body armor at the time and continued to fire when Clayton was down, police have said. Clayton died at a hospital.

Loyd fled the shooting scene in a car and fired at a deputy who tried to the stop him, authorities said. The deputy was unharmed.

Police have said three people were arrested in Florida on charges of having helped Loyd avoid capture in recent weeks.

An Orange County sheriff's deputy in the manhunt for Loyd was killed in a collision between his motorcycle and a van.

(Reporting by Ian Simpson in Washington; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)