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VIRGINIA BEACH VA. -- A Virginia Beach police detective, who used to work for the Hampton Police Division, was shot and killed during an undercover operation late Thursday night.
Michael Smith Phillips, 37, a six-year veteran of the Virginia Beach Police Department, worked in Hampton for three years before joining the Virginia Beach force in 2002.
Two men have been charged with first-degree murder in the case, police said.
Ted Vincent Carter, 23, and Marshall Demetrius Moyd, 26, who both live on South Clubhouse Road in Virginia Beach, are being held without bond in the Virginia Beach Correctional Center. The two have also been charged with use of a firearm in commission of a felony and conspiracy to violate the Drug Conspiracy Act.
Phillips, a member of the special investigations unit for about two years, was "in the course of an undercover operation when the suspects opened fire," Virginia Beach police spokesman Adam Bernstein said.
Detectives from the unit were in "a narcotic buy-bust operation," he said. Phillips was shot three times in the upper torso, police said.
The detective was shot around 11:15 p.m. Thursday in the parking lot of a shopping center on Holland Road in the city's Green Run section. About 100 yards from the shooting scene, near an exit to the shopping center, a large sport utility vehicle, its headlights still burning, sat hours later with a flat front tire.
Around the area, police had established a second crime scene.
Bernstein said the second crime scene is where the two suspects were arrested shortly after the shooting.
Hampton Police spokeswoman Cpl. Allison Good said, "This is a great loss for the law enforcement community, and our sympathy goes out to his family, friends and to the members of the Virginia Beach Police Department."
Phillips is survived by a wife and two sons, ages 12 and 8, Bernstein said.
Records show both suspects have been convicted of previous crimes. Carter was convicted two years ago in Virginia Beach for carrying a concealed weapon, while Moyd was convicted six years ago in Norfolk on firearm and drug possession charges.
Phillips' death marks the first time in five years that a Virginia Beach police officer has been killed in the line of duty.
Police officers in the resort city were wearing black slashes across their badges Friday as a gesture of respect, Bernstein said, and the slashes will remain in place until after the detective's funeral.
"The police department is one giant family," he said. "This is the worst part of the job."
Hampton Roads law enforcement deaths 1998-2008
- 2008: Detective Michael Smith Phillips, 37, shot during an undercover operation
- 2006: Sheriff's Deputy William Tiedeman Jr., 54, suffered a heart attack during a training exercise
- 2003: Officer Rodney F. Pocceschi, 33, shot during a traffic stop
VIRGINIA STATE POLICE
- 2006: Senior Trooper Robert Hill Jr., 42, struck by a passing car during a traffic stop in Southampton County
- 2008: Detective Jarrod Shivers, shot during a drug raid
- 2005: Officer Michael Saffran, 45, shot while pursuing a bank robber who had taken hostages
- 2006: Officer Seneca Darden, 25, shot in the course of a burglary investigation
- 2005: Officer Stanley Reaves, 33, shot while investigating suspicious activity
- 2003: Officer Sheila Herring, 39, shot while investigating an assault at a bar
- 2001: Officer James Gilbert, 28, shot while attempting to prevent a suicide
- 1998: Officer William Burtt, 40, shot while defending a woman from an attempted abduction
- 2005: Officer Drew Henley, 33, suffered a heart attack while pursuing a suspect
- 2006: Deputy Sheriff Charles Fisher, 52, motorcycle accident
- 2005: Patrolman Rick Spaulding, 52, suffered heart attack after pursuit of suspects
- 1998: Patrolman Allen Gibson Jr., 25, shot while struggling with two suspects
Source: Officer Down Memorial Page (odmp.org)
The Virginian-Pilot contributed to this report.