Md. Man Charged After 2 Del. Police Officers Shot - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Written by Kye Parsons

Md. Man Charged After 2 Del. Police Officers Shot

Posted: Updated:
Georgetown police officer Chad Ernest Spicer, fatally shot on Tuesday night Georgetown police officer Chad Ernest Spicer, fatally shot on Tuesday night
Cpl. Shawn M. Brittingham, shot and wounded Tuesday night Cpl. Shawn M. Brittingham, shot and wounded Tuesday night
Derrick J. Powell, above, is charged with murder Derrick J. Powell, above, is charged with murder
Christopher L. Reeves, above, is still on the loose Christopher L. Reeves, above, is still on the loose
Aerial view of the shooting scene. (Photo: WBOC Chopper 16) Aerial view of the shooting scene. (Photo: WBOC Chopper 16)

GEORGETOWN, Del. (WBOC/AP)- One of two men in custody after a Georgetown police officer was fatally shot has been charged with murder, Delaware State Police said Wednesday.

Twenty-two-year-old Derrick J. Powell of Cumberland, Md. was charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of Patrolman Chad Ernest Spicer, the town's first officer to die in the line of duty, according to state police spokesman Cpl. Bruce Harris.

At around 6:45 p.m. Tuesday, Spicer and 31-year-old Cpl. Shawn M. Brittingham stopped parallel to a Chrysler Sebring that matched the description of a car linked to earlier report of shots fired in the parking lot of the McDonald's on Route 113.

As Brittingham got out of the cruiser, police said one shot was fired, striking Spicer in his face before he could get out. Police said Brittingham was hit in the neck by a bullet fragment. Both were taken to Beebe Medical Center in Lewes, but Spicer died from his injuries. Brittingham was listed in good condition Wednesday. He is now recovering at home.

Court records filed by police Wednesday show Powell sitting behind the driver in the Sebring's back seat and allege that he fired the shot that killed Spicer from a 9mm handgun. The bullet
hit Spicer in the cheek and came out under his left ear. Georgetown Police Chief William Topping said his officers did not return fire.

Police are still looking for 20-year-old Christopher Reeves of Lincoln, the car's driver. He is charged with resisting arrest and pleaded delinquent in March 2006 to a juvenile charge of aggravated menacing. He has been arrested since then for allegedly pistol-whipping one man and shooting at another, but court documents show those charges were dismissed in September 2008 because of delays in bringing the cases to trial.

Police said a second person in custody had not been charged because the preliminary investigation suggested "he was not directly involved in the killing" of Spicer. According to court
records, Luis Flores tried to help officers treating Spicer at the scene.

Spicer, the father of a 3-year-old girl, Aubrey, had lived in Georgetown his whole life and was hired one year ago Wednesday after working as an officer in Bridgeville and Laurel for the
previous five years, according to state police.

Brittingham lives in Millsboro, Del. with his wife Melissa and 1-year-old daughter, Olivia. He has been a Georgetown officer since February 2003.

In addition to the murder charge, Powell is also charged with three counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, second-degree burglary, first-degree reckless endangering and resisting arrest. He is being held in the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center on $97,000 cash-only bail.

Police say Reeves should be considered armed and dangerous. He is described as a black male, 5-foot-6, 140 pounds,  black hair and brown eyes.  Reeves is considered armed and dangerous. Police say their search for Reeves has been expanded to the Dover area.

Anyone who comes into contact with Reeves is asked to call Troop 4 at (302) 856-5850 and Crime Stoppers at-1-800-TIP-3333 or for immediate assistance dial 911.   

Editor's note: A trust fund has been established for Spicer's 3-year-old daughter Aubrey. Contributions can be sent to the Aubrey Spicer Trust, c/o Norman E. Spicer, Wilmington Trust Bank, 139 S. State St., Dover DE 19901, or any Wilmington Trust Bank.  

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