State will not seek death penalty for accused cop killer Markeith Loyd, Gov. reassigns case

Orlando PD Chief John Mina: 'extremely upset'
Posted at 5:12 AM, Mar 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-16 16:35:50-04

The State Attorney's Office will not seek the death penalty for accused cop killer Markeith Loyd. 

Orlando Police Chief John Mina released a statement about the decision, saying he was "extremely upset."

"I have seen the video of Markeith Loyd executing Lt. Debra Clayton while she lay defenseless on the ground," Mina said. "She was given no chance to live. A cop killer - who also killed his pregnant girlfriend - should not be given that chance."



Loyd is accused of killing his pregnant ex-girlfriend Sade Dixon in December 2016 and Orlando Police Lt. Debra Clayton in January 2017. 

Late Thursday afternoon, Florida Governor Rick Scott announced he is reassigning the case.

A spokeswoman for Gov. Rick Scott said Thursday that the governor is reassigning the Markeith Loyd case to a prosecutor in a neighboring district northwest of Orlando.

Scott's action came hours after the top prosecutor in Orlando announced her office will no longer seek the death penalty in cases.

Loyd's case is the most visible one affected by State Attorney Aramis Ayala's decision. He is charged with killing his pregnant ex-girlfriend and Lt. Debra Clayton.

Ayala says there is no evidence of improved public safety for citizens or law enforcement with the death penalty, and that such cases are costly and drag on for years.

WFTV Orlando reports that prosecutors will seek life in prison without the possibility of parole. 

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