Airman arrested on fugitive warrant has been at Hurlburt for more than a year

Jim Thompson
Northwest Florida Daily News

HURLBURT FIELD — A 25-year-old Colorado man serving as a senior airman with the Air Force’s 1st Special Operations Wing remained in the Okaloosa County Jail on Monday after being picked up early Friday morning at Hurlburt Field on a Colorado fugitive warrant connected with a sexual assault case originating in Colorado’s El Paso County.

RELATED: Hurlburt Field airman picked up on sexual assault warrant from Colorado

An investigation into the sexual assault allegations is continuing, according to an email from the 1st Special Operations Wing’s public affairs office.

Derek Wilson Tyler, of a Mayo Street address on Hurlburt Field, was picked up shortly after midnight Friday on Freedom Way, according to an Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office report. Freedom Way crosses onto Hurlburt Field from Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in Fort Walton Beach.

The Sheriff’s Office report did not detail the circumstances under which local authorities learned of the outstanding fugitive warrant against Tyler, but a 1st Special Operations Wing spokeswoman said Friday that Hurlburt Field’s own base security personnel assisted in Tyler’s apprehension.

Tyler was booked into the Okaloosa County Jail shortly after 2:30 a.m. Friday, and is being held without bond for the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office.

As of deadline Monday, the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office had not responded to a Daily News request for additional information on the alleged sexual assault, but the 1st Special Operations Wing public affairs office at Hurlburt Field was able to provide some additional information on Tyler.

According to the email from the public affairs office, Tyler joined the Air Force on Jan. 9, 2018, and arrived at Hurlburt Field on June 27 of last year.

“The Air Force has a strict zero-tolerance policy for sexual assault and does not condone this type of behavior from its members,” the email noted, before going on with a reminder that Tyler “is presumed innocent until proven guilty.”

The email also noted that “Hurlburt Field is cooperating fully with the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office and local authorities” in the ongoing investigation, before referring further inquiries to the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office.