Our City Commission is Quite United, Bruce. The Unity is the Problem

The Lakeland Police Advisory Committee (LPAC) is headed and given voice by the forceful Bruce Abels, a longtime top executive with Saddle Creek. I know Bruce pretty well, and I respect his sharp intellect and civic-mindedness. He didn’t ask for the peculiar unpaid honor of taking a lot of crap in public — not to […]

Chaos and Reckoning

This is what disarray looks like. And it’s healthy — vital even. Behold, Lakeland and Polk County, your leadership class — with nowhere to run, nowhere to hide, and no one to blame but itself. Long-term, mass-degradation-of-child-sexual-abuse-victim scandals at your largest city’s police department tend to have that effect. Here’s The Ledger’s story from this […]

The Big 3 Must Go; and Other Thoughts on Rescuing Lakeland from Itself

I haven’t written much about the meltdown at LPD because The Ledger has done an exemplary job dogging the story. The reporters and editors and even business management deserve kudos for keeping at it and committing lawyers and money. Well done. But now that it’s all exploded — and I’m back from the old country […]

LPD Open House March 20th

The Lakeland Police Department has an open house March 20th to give the public a glimpse behind-the-scenes. At least the part of the public not familiar with the downtown police station.

From 10 am to 2pm the 219 N. Massachusetts Ave. station is focused on Cyber Safety. Experts will provide instruction on identity protection and child safe web surfing. In addition to activities for the kids, the City’s mobile command center, armored rescue vehicle, and K-9 team will also be on hand.

While visiting the station, you can safely dispose of your unwanted and expired prescription medication. Just secure the pills in a clear air-tight sealed plastic bag. StandUp Polk will have a Purge Your Pills drop-off station available.

LPD Promises to Ticket Those Who Don’t Click It

Lakeland Police Department Officers are on the lookout for unbuckled drivers and passengers. Through March 15th LPD officers are on the lookout for unbuckled drivers and passengers throughout the city. During this time period, drivers and passengers will be ticketed if they are not buckled up. Here’s the Florida law requiring seatbelts and the cost of the ticket is: $30 for unbuckled adults and $60 for improperly restrained children.

“Safety belt use in Florida climbed to 81.7% last year, almost reaching the national average of 82%. The minority of Floridians who do not wear a seat belt continue to make up the majority of traffic fatalities in the state, according to the Florida Department of Transportation website. The 1 in 5 Floridians who did not buckle up accounted for 3 in 5 traffic fatalities.” — Lakeland Police Department

Lakeland Police Change Beats

The Lakeland Police Department is changing their beats to improve officer assignment and response flexibility. In the past, LPD utilized smaller single officer assigned beats. Two or three officers will be assigned to each of the new zones. LPD Lieutenant Jody Sisson, who participated in the remapping project, says the new beats allow officers to work together in between calls to target problem areas.

Stolen City Truck Recovered

The Lakeland City truck stolen the morning of April 28th was found approximately 12 hours later by a Lakeland Police Department officer. It was 3.2 miles South of the location of the theft. LPD reports the vehicle appeared ransacked, but drivable. The doors were unlocked, keys were left on the floor board, and personal property software were missing from the vehicle.

Lakeland City Truck Stolen

The city water utilities division needs your help. It seems the driver didn’t listen to any of the many Lakeland Police Department reminders, and left the keys in a city truck while he ran into a convenience store. As you’ve deduced, the truck was gone when the city employee ran back out.

The truck was stolen this morning from the 2000 block of East Edgewood Drive. Based on the description, we believe it is the location inside:

Last Week on Lakeland Local

Highlights from this past week include:

Tom Hagerty’s guide to the Lakeland Highlands Scrub

Cat Carter’s Holiday Event Calendar

Realty maps for New Homes 11/2 to 11/15 and Lakeland Homes Sold in October 2008

USFP looks for a Signature Architect by guest writer Catherine Lavallee-Welch

and the article that generated the most comments: Guns for Money

LPD Seeks Help With Bank Robber ID

Bank RobberAt about 2:25 today the Mid-Florida Federal Credit Union, located at 2105 New Tampa Hwy was robber. The Lakeland Police Department would like your help identifying the suspect pictured at left.

The bank robber was described as a black male, 6’03” to 6’05”, 25-35 years of age, 200 to 215 pounds, with gold teeth on lower jaw.

The suspect passed a note demanding money and fled by foot to the Northwest. Witnesses did not report seeing a weapon. He escaped with an undisclosed amount of cash.

If you think you know the person pictured, call Crime
Stoppers at 1-800-226-TIPS, or LPD Detective Tye Thompson at 863.834.8955.

Click the photo for a larger image.