(FLORIDA) LATEST: Hundreds hunt for Daytona Beach cop shooter as critically wounded ‘hero’ officer keeps ‘fighting’: officials #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – June.27: The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office said “hundreds” of law enforcement officers responded following the Wednesday night news that a Daytona Beach police officer had been shot in the head. As of midday Thursday, the hunt for the shooting suspect, identified by authorities as 29-year-old Othal Wallace, had “expanded far beyond Central Florida,” sheriff’s officials said.

MANHUNT: FLORIDA: Hundreds of officers responded after a 26-year-old cop was shot in the head as the hunt for the “armed and dangerous” man accused of shooting a police officer continued Thursday as the critically wounded cop continues “fighting” for his life at a nearby hospital, authorities said.

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The county was placed under a lockdown for hours following the shooting, clickorlando.com reported, adding that the U.S. Marshal service had joined the search efforts. 

Wallace is accused of shooting the 26-year-old officer in the head just before 9 p.m. Wednesday, while he was responding to a report of a “suspicious incident.” 

The officer, who has not been identified, remains hospitalized for his critical injuries. Investigators are now offering a reward of up to $100,000 for information leading them to Wallace.

Police have released images of Wallace and the vehicle he is possibly driving. Authorities are expected to hold a news conference at 5 p.m. local time.

Police also released police body camera footage of the officer approaching the vehicle, from which Wallace emerges. As the officer instructs Wallace to sit in the car and asks him if he lives at the location, Wallace continues toward him, asking, “What’s going on?”

“Can you sit down? I’ll talk to you,” the officer says, seemingly calmly. 

Wallace responds: “Come on now. Don’t do this,” as he continues asking questions. 

A struggle appears to ensue before a gunshot can be heard in the background seconds later. Wallace then fled, authorities said. 

A spokesperson for the department would not provide any more details on Friday for the reason for the police response to the area. 

Police said early Thursday that officers responding to the scene discovered the wounded officer lying on the ground. He was rushed to an area hospital, where Daytona Police Chief Jakari Young said he was “fighting.” 

Young told reporters at a news conference that the officer had undergone surgery that was “fairly successful.”

“He still has a long way to go,” Young added. 

Young said more than 500 officers from various agencies had responded to help find Wallace, who officials said may have fled to the Atlanta area.

A search of an apartment near the shooting location revealed a rifle, numerous boxes of ammunition, a handgun, several high-capacity magazines and three ballistic vests, Young said. It wasn’t clear what Wallace’s connection to the apartment and the weapons might be.

“He should be considered armed and dangerous,” the chief said.

A community prayer vigil for the injured officer was scheduled for 3:30 p.m. local time at Halifax Health Medical Center. Police are expected to provide an update in the investigation at 5 p.m. local time. 

Fox News’ Brie Stimson contributed to this report, as well as the Associated Press.Stephanie Pagones is a Digital Reporter for FOX Business and Fox News.

#AceNewsDesk report ………Published: Jun.27: 2021:

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