A Wake County deputy was shot and killed Thursday night while on patrol with his police dog in eastern Wake County, the Sheriff’s Office said.
The Sheriff’s Office identified the deputy as Ned Byrd, a former detention officer and member of the department for 13 years.
Byrd was shot “more than once” while on patrol with his dog in an unmarked SUV, Sheriff’s Office spokesman Eric Curry said. He was outside the SUV when he was shot and was wearing a protective vest, Curry said, but declined to describe Byrd’s injuries.
“We are still trying to determine what led him to that location,” Curry said.
Before he was shot, Byrd had responded to a call about a mile away from where he was found and had cleared the scene and entered notes, Curry said. The dog was still in the car when Byrd was found, Curry said.
Byrd started working for the Sheriff’s Office in 2009, beginning as a detention officer transporting inmates and becoming a deputy in 2018, according to his LinkedIn profile. Before that, he worked as a project manager at Signature Special Events from 2005 to 2009 and with another event company in Flushing, New York, for 11 years before that.
The shooting occurred near a gas station on Auburn Knightdale Road and Battle Bridge Road, reported ABC11, The News & Observer’s media partner.
Sheriff Gerald Baker announced Byrd’s death at a news conference early Friday morning, asking for prayers.
“It breaks my heart to report that a member of this office was fatally wounded sometime after 11 o’clock last night in the line of duty,” Baker said, his eyes red.
“We will find who’s responsible for this loss,” he said.
The circumstances of the deputy’s death have not been released.
Recent shootings of NC deputies
Thursday’s shooting happened just a day after a Caswell County sheriff’s deputy was hospitalized with serious injuries after he was shot Wednesday while serving a domestic violence protective order in rural Semora, The News & Observer previously reported.
And one deputy was killed and two injured in Wayne County, 60 miles southeast of Raleigh, on Aug. 1 after they were shot while serving an involuntary commitment order inside a home, The N&O reported. The death of Sgt. Matthew Fishman, 38, was announced the next day in a Facebook post.
In all, six North Carolina law enforcement officers have been shot, two of them fatally, in the last three weeks.
Coffee and cigarettes
Thursday night’s shooting, a 20-minute drive from downtown Raleigh, left residents guessing in the rural southeastern corner of Wake County.
Deputies blocked a portion of Battle Bridge Road near the Marathon gas station that was closed during the shooting.
At roughly 9:30 a.m., a tow truck removed a white Chevrolet SUV from behind police tape. The vehicle did not appear to belong to law enforcement and showed no signs of the shooting.
Residents gathered for coffee and cigarettes outside the Marathon reported hearing nothing around the intersection of Auburn Knightdale Road.
The crime scene is near a neighborhood called The Preserve, close to a law enforcement training center and a county waste collection site.
The road dead-ends at a wastewater treatment plant.
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