Sitting in a room of her home that serves as a memorial for her husband, slain Kissimmee police Officer Matthew Baxter, Sadia Baxter wiped back tears as she recalled the last two years without him.
The walls are covered with family photos, medals and a proclamation honoring the fallen first responder.
Almost two years after the Kissimmee officer was slain, Baxter, a Florida Department of Law Enforcement agent is preparing for the trial of her husband's accused killer which begins Monday.
“My girls were Daddy’s little girls,” Baxter said. "It’s a void I can never fill.”
A single mom with three daughters, Baxter has worked hard to make sure the girls ages 2, 3 and 9
never forget their father.
The couple met while both served at the Kissimmee police department. They had only been married three years.
“My youngest was just 7 months when my husband passed away," she said. “He didn’t even get to see her take her first step.”
Officer Baxter and Sgt. Sam Howard responded to the call that would ultimately be their last on August 18, 2017.
Baxter arrived at Palm Way and Cypress streets in Kissimmee, where he confronted the suspect, Everett Glenn Miller, during a traffic stop.
A cellphone video clip shows Baxter calling dispatch for a sergeant after Miller refused to show his driver’s license.
“We ought to put this on Facebook live,” Everett is heard saying on the clip.
Howard arrived on the scene and moments later, according to detectives, both men were shot in the head.
Kissimmee police investigators said that after shooting both officers, Miller, a retired Marine, went to Roscoe’s Bar on Orange Blossom Trail, where he was arrested. Miller is charged with premeditated murder, carrying a concealed weapon and resisting arrest without violence.
Jury selection in Miller’s murder trial begins Monday, two years and one day after the two officers were killed.
Sadia Baxter said she will be there every day out of respect for her husband’s legacy.
“It’s not going to be easy being there every day,” she said. “But I’m a representative of my husband, who no longer has a voice.”
Opening arguments are expected to begin Aug. 26 or Aug. 27.
The widow may be asked to address the court during the penalty phase of the trial. A source familiar with the proceedings said she will make a statement if Miller is convicted of first-degree murder.
“I do have a lot to say," Baxter said. “It’s not the appropriate time because of the sensitivity of the case. I’d rather save those words for that day.”
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