WCBI NEWS AT TEN - 12/22/2020
Remembering Fallen Huntsville Police Officer One Year After Death
One year ago, life changed forever for everyone who knew and loved huntsville police officer billy clardy the third.
You're taking a live look right now at the fallen officers memorial.
The stac agent was killed in the line of duty on december sixth 2019 while investigating a drug case.
Good evening... thanks for joining us tonight.
Im megan reyna.
Will robinson smith has the night off.
Waay 31's sydney martin spoke with clardy's family and his friends about their loss, the last year they've spent without him, and their hope for justice.
"while this year has been tough on many people, the clardy family had the added burden of this loss.
And while they wait for justice those who served by his side vow to keep this decorated officer's legacy alive."
Tim clardy jr., cousin "about the time it happened i was just getting home from work and i didn't hear any of the radio chatter but i did receive a phone call and i didn't know who it was.
And we had, as a family being in law enforcement, we had a little ordeal that we would all do.
Contact each other and let each other know we're okay and there was one missing that day."
One year later...huntsvill e police sergeant tim clardy junior still vividly remembers not hearing from his cousin, stac agent billy clardy the third.
Dispatcher "stac 12....huntsville to stac 12.
Stac 12 agent billy clardy, end of watch december 6th, 2019."
Long line of police coming from the hospital cousins by birth..the two became more like brothers during their career in law enforcement.
Tim clardy, cousin "we have a history of law enforcement in our family.
It goes back decades."
Tim clardy, cousin "he's the oldest grandchild.
So he was the cool cousin that was around during the holidays."
Tim clardy, cousin "it was a pretty close bond.
Long talks, encouraging each other to move forward.
Encouraging each other to get outside the comfort zone and pushing forward to make the community better."
Clardy worked as a narcotics agent with the department at the time of his death-- he was shot during a drug task force operation..
Investigators tell us when the suspect, lajermoney brown, arrived at a home on levert street he drew a gun and shot clardy.
Lieutenant tony mcelyea, his supervisor, arrived on scene shortly after it happened.
"when i got in my car, i turned my radio on.
I heard something was wrong.
Knowing it was probably something bad."
One year later, he can't shake that memory.
But he chooses to focus on what clardy brought to the department and the community he served.
Tony mcelyea, huntsville police "he was a dear friend.
He's somebody that i considered family.
On top of that i worked my entire career with him, so it's definitely been hard this last year.
The only thing we can do is honor him by continuing to work with the work ethic that he had, with the professionalism, and honor him in that way."
Mcelyea described the bond his team shared from the countless operations they worked together... lt.
Tony mcelyea, huntsville police "it's a brotherhood.
They're with each other more than they're with their only families.
They're with each other sometimes 16, 17 hours a day because there is no set hours in narcotics work so when you're with someone that much you can't help but to grow a special bond."
The department has stood by the family's side the past year... nats from prayer vigil 2019 "as we come together as a community to honor billy clardy's life, we will leave to lift up his family as he died for yours.
And his service to country, city community."
Tony mcelyea, huntsville police "in the coming days, months, and years, we're going to be right by your side.
Anytime that you need us.
Billy had our six for years and now it's our turn to have yours."
Dissolve to bite lt.
Tony mcelyea, huntsville police "time goes by way too fast.
He's constantly on our minds.
His family is constantly on our minds.
We want to make sure we are there for them.
And it's unbelievable it has been a year already."
Both men remember his dedication to the job... sgt.
Tim clardy, cousin "in everything that he did he tried to improve the quality of life of the people around him.
Whether it was at home, whether it was at work in the community, he always strived to make.
It might not be better for him but it would be better for the people around him."
Tony mcelyea, huntsville police "it wasn't just enforcement.
He got to know the members of the community.
He took a very strong interest in making sure he knew the people of his community in the zones that he worked.
And that's why everybody that you knew that knew billy considered him a friend.
Because he was one of those people.
He had an infectious personality.
A great smile in everyone that knew and loved him."
Both, in disbelief it's been a year since they've seen him..
Shot from cemetery sgt.
Tim clardy, cousin "it seems like yesterday.
And when you have a problem or an issue that you normally call and talk or advice in situations that you come into and just the bond that we have and the relationship that we had, there are times when you reach down and you want to call them and you want advice.
That's the rough time and in the past year there's long days.
In the whole big scheme of things it doesn't seem like it's been a year."
In huntsville sydney martin waay 31 news.
The man accused of killing stac agent billy clardy the third appeared in court last week.
Lajeromeny brown is charged with capital murder and faces the death penalty.
Huntsville police arrested him moments after the shooting on levert street in huntsville.
The madison county district attorney's office said it expects the case to go before a grand jury in the spring of 20-21.