Deputy Philip Billings was a member of the Broward Sheriff's Office for 18 months when he was shot and killed early on the morning of April 6, 2003 while working a security detail at an automobile dealership near Pompano Beach. The BSO dispatch center received a call about the shooting at 12:40 a.m. and a deputy was on the scene two minutes later. Paramedics rushed Deputy Billings to North Broward Medical Center, but doctors were unable to save him.
Nearly 4,000 friends, family members and representatives from law enforcement agencies throughout the state and the nation attended his funeral services in Ft. Lauderdale on April 10. A procession extending for several miles accompanied Deputy Billings to his final rest in Hollywood, Florida.
An unprecedented $100,000 reward fund was established for information leading to the arrest of his killer. Two young men suspected in the killing were found dead on April 10, 2003, the result of a murder-suicide.
Born in 1977 in La Paz, Bolivia into a missionary family, he was a graduate of Palm Beach Atlantic College and had served as a counselor and mentor to troubled children in Florida, Missouri and Oregon before joining the agency.
Deputy Billings was the twelfth BSO deputy to give his life in the line-of-duty.