Markeith Loyd found guilty in 2017 murder of Orlando Police Lt. Debra Clayton


Master Sergeant Debra Clayton, Orlando law enforcement officer shot and killed by Loyd. - PHOTO VIA ORLANDO POLICE DEPARTMENT
  • Photo via Orlando Police Department
  • Master Sergeant Debra Clayton, Orlando law enforcement officer shot and killed by Loyd.
After five hours of deliberation, jurors found Markeith Loyd guilty of the murder of Orlando Police Lt. Debra Clayton.

The verdict was 1st-degree murder. Loyd was also found guilty of the attempted murder of a second police officer, and of a carjacking committed while attempting to flee the scene.

Clayton encountered Loyd in the parking lot of a Walmart while he was on the run from the murder of his pregnant ex-girlfriend Sade Dixon. Loyd is already serving life in prison for the killing of Dixon and her unborn baby.

The jury returns Saturday to begin penalty phase, in which they will decide whether or not Loyd will be sentenced to death.

The jury must give a unanimous recommendation for the judge to impose the death penalty, but given the Florida Supreme Court's recent decisions regarding the rules around orders of execution, a defense appeal is likely if that happens.

A reverse timeline of some of our coverage is below.

Stay on top of Central Florida news and views with our weekly newsletters, and consider supporting this free publication. Our small but mighty team is working tirelessly to bring you Central Florida news, and every little bit helps.


We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at [email protected].

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club for as little as $5 a month.