Fort Walton Beach, FL – A veteran Okaloosa County sheriff’s deputy was fatally shot while responding to an armed standoff on Christmas Eve.
The series of events leading to the shooting began the morning of Dec. 24, when a woman reported having been assaulted by 43-year-old Timothy Price-Williams the night before, according to WPEC.
The woman told investigators Price-Williams shoved her and slapped her in the face during an argument, and that he stole her phone to prevent her from being able to call 911, according to police.
Investigators were ultimately able to obtain a warrant to arrest Price-Williams on a domestic battery charge, WPEC reported.
When Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) deputies responded to the suspect’s townhome at 710 North Park Boulevard at approximately 9 a.m., he allegedly refused to cooperate and would not exit the residence, WEAR reported.
As a Special Response Team (SRT) surrounded the home and attempted to negotiate with the barricaded suspect, multiple deputies entered the fenced-in backyard to help secure the perimeter, according to WPEC.
But Price-Williams still refused to surrender and ultimately began firing at law enforcement from the window of his home, police said.
One of the rounds he allegedly fired at about 12:40 p.m. hit OCSO Corporal Ray Hamilton, WPEC reported.
The wounded hero was rushed to HCA Fort Walton Beach-Destin Hospital, where he succumbed to his injury just after 3 p.m., according to the news outlet.
We are reeling this Christmas Eve after Corporal Ray Hamilton lost his life while serving as a Special Response Team member today, shot by a domestic violence suspect the SRT was working to take into custody at his townhome near Fort Walton Beach. Your prayers are so appreciated. pic.twitter.com/ldZJEXXRcB
— OkaloosaSheriff (@OCSOALERTS) December 24, 2022
The standoff ended when Price-Williams was shot in the arm by a deputy as he stepped out of his residence, police said.
His wounds are not life-threatening, according to WEAR.
The gunman was ultimately arrested on a first-degree premeditated murder charge, WPEC reported.
He is being held without bond, according to WTVY.
Cpl. Hamilton served the OCSO for five years.
“We are devastated by the grief of losing Corporal Hamilton, a deputy who was a ray of sunshine in the OCSO, dedicated to protecting others,” Okaloosa County Sheriff Eric Aden said in a statement. “We appreciate the endless stream of words of support that have come in for his family and his co-workers as we face this heartbreaking loss of a profoundly loved and respected friend, public servant, and hero.”
The investigation into the incident remains ongoing.