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'War On Cops' Continues: Third St. Pete Officer Killed

'War On Cops' Continues: Third St. Pete Officer Killed

Tampa Bay Tribune via YellowBrix

February 22, 2011

ST. PETERSBURG – A 25-year police veteran of the St. Petersburg Police Department was fatally shot by a man at Second Avenue South and Eighth Street South on Monday night, officials said.

A search for the shooter is ongoing this morning in the Campbell Park area, near Tropicana Field, police said. Schools in the vicinity have been closed and students are being relocated to other campuses, authorities said.

Police identified the slain officer as David S. Crawford. The 46-year-old officer became the third St. Petersburg police officer to be shot and killed in the line of duty in less than a month.

“This killer has taken someone precious to us – a member of our family,” Police Chief Chuck Harmon said early this morning during a news conference outside the hospital.

“I’m not going to lie. The city has been through hell,” Mayor Bill Foster said. “It took 30 years to lose an officer in the line of duty, and within 30 days, it’s happened again. I can tell you cities don’t prepare for this; departments don’t prepare for this.”

Shortly after 10:30 p.m. Monday, Crawford was shot multiple times in the chest at close range. He returned fire but it’s not known whether he hit the suspect, Harmon said. Police did not say whether Crawford was wearing a bulletproof vest.

Flowers began to appear at police headquarters just after dawn, much as they did after the Jan. 24 slayings of Sgt. Thomas Baitinger and Officer Jeffrey Yaslowitz, the first St. Petersburg officers killed in the line of duty since 1980.

One woman wearing a black T-shirt that pays tribute to Baitinger and Yaslowitz dropped off flowers shortly after sunrise at police headquarters, where the flag was already at half-staff.

She declined to give her name but said her brother was a police officer. She said he was off at the time of the shooting but was called in to help hunt for the killer.

“It’s horrible,” she said. “My mom wants him to get off the force.”

The card with the flowers she left reads simply, “Because we care.”

In the lobby of police headquarters, framed color photographs of Baitinger and Yaslowitz still sit on a table below a plaque honoring those killed in the line of duty. Their names have not yet been added to the plaque.

Michael Ponce de Leon was a witness to the aftermath of the shooting.

“Everybody was screaming,” he told BayNews 9. "All the cops were like, ‘No, not again.’

“Blood was everywhere. He (Crawford) was basically mumbling. I don’t know if he was in agony or pain; I couldn’t make it out.”

Ponce de Leon said he yelled at the downed officer to keep him conscious.

Josh Harris, 21, lives nearby on Third Avenue South and was walking along Grey Eagle Court to a convenience store when he heard shots.

He said he heard four consecutive shots, a pause and then two more.

He said he saw the suspect fleeing the area, running south on Eighth Street, and then spotted Crawford on the ground, lying on his back. Blood was everywhere, he said.

Continue >>


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  • Th_detective_max50

    Retleo

    over 3 years ago

    5524 Comments

    Police Brass have just announced an arrest in this shooting. Hope the POS gets the MAX for his actions.

  • Me_callie08172010_max50

    els98

    over 3 years ago

    472 Comments

    Rest in peace Officer David Crawford

  • Athens_2007_242_max50

    johndavidson53

    over 3 years ago

    46 Comments

    RIP Brother- May our Lord hold and keep close, those left behind.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    policecar99

    over 3 years ago

    8 Comments

    As the widow of a police officer shot and killed, I know what these families are going through. They need the support of their city and their department. God Bless the families, the Department and all law enforcement officers who still go out everyday to protect and serve. My thoughts and prayers are with you and you will never be forgotten.

  • Sheriff_3_max50

    sheriff950

    over 3 years ago

    5364 Comments

    Rest in peace my brother.... My prayers are with law enforcement to catch this dirt bag....

  • Sppd_max50

    Shoebox

    over 3 years ago

    18 Comments

    It's just awful. Three of our finest shot in less than a month. It is just crazy. And the scum bag is still on the run.
    RIP Brother Crawford

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    1128mpboy

    over 3 years ago

    36 Comments

    RIP. GOD BLESS YOU, AND YOUR FAMILY.

  • Gods_team_max50

    IowaNinersFan

    over 3 years ago

    22926 Comments

    RIP Officer Crawford. Thank you for your service.

  • 020_max50

    mericlejr

    over 3 years ago

    228 Comments

    RIP. This does have to stop, but when and were, and most of all HOW? I still think we to double up on all patrols,.. What it is it going to take for the people in power relize we have a growing problem..Officer down is becomeing all to comman.. I for one want this to stop.. How can we be heard..

  • 309

    Hbryant188

    over 3 years ago

    594 Comments

    RIP. What a shame.

  • My_pd_photo_max50

    Tactical_2e

    over 3 years ago

    410 Comments

    Too many..... God bless Officer Crawford Family and Departmental brother & sisters.

  • Clone_trooper_max50

    lkdavis71

    over 3 years ago

    1066 Comments

    Rest in Peace.

  • American_flag_eagle_max50

    NewYork911

    over 3 years ago

    1672 Comments

    God Speed Brother..

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Clive

    over 3 years ago

    12 Comments

    My thoughts and prayers go out to the family, friends and brother officers of David Crawford. To loose an officer in these circumstances is so alien to Police Officer from the UK. You will always be remembered. MAY GODS LIGHT SHINE DOWN ON YOU.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    smj389

    over 3 years ago

    64 Comments

    Rest in Peace

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