Last week, Othal Wallace, the defendant, received the maximum sentence of 30 years in prison for fatally shooting Daytona Beach Police Officer Jason Raynor.
On the evening of June 23, 2021, Officer Raynor encountered Wallace in a Honda SUV while patrolling an apartment complex on Kingston Avenue in Daytona Beach, Central Florida. Body camera footage captured the brief 42-second interaction between the officer and the defendant. Wallace refused to respond to Officer Raynor’s questions or obey his commands.
The situation escalated, and a gunshot was heard.
Officer Raynor, quickly located by his fellow officers, had been shot in the head and was rushed to the hospital in critical condition. A search for Wallace ensued.
Three days later, on June 26, 2021, Georgia State Police apprehended the defendant, who was hiding in a treehouse in a remote area east of Atlanta, armed with multiple weapons. He was arrested and returned to Volusia County.
Sadly, nearly two months after being shot, on August 17, 2021, Officer Raynor succumbed to complications from the gunshot wound.
“Officer Jason Raynor was doing his job – protecting our community – and he lost his life as a result.” State Attorney R.J. Larizza said about the defendant. “The defendant shot and killed Officer Raynor because he harbored a deep-seated hate for law enforcement – not because he was fearful for his life. There is no sentence that would adequately punish the defendant for his brutal murder but imposing the maximum sentence brings some measure of justice and accountability.”
The Daytona Beach Police Department led the investigation, aided by various local and state law enforcement agencies. State Attorney R.J. Larizza, along with Assistant State Attorney Andrew Urbanak and Chief of Homicide Jason Lewis, effectively handled the case for the state.
The Honorable Raul Zambrano oversaw the case and delivered the verdict. The defendant was convicted of Manslaughter by a Clay County jury in September.