Funeral services for LPD Officer Paul Dunn, who died in a motorcycle accident on Thursday, are scheduled for noon Wednesday at Lakes Church, formerly First Baptist Church of the Mall. The public is invited, and the family encourages people to wear attire supporting the military or the UF Gators | ALSO: LPD Facebook post
Lakeland Police Officer Paul Dunn, 50, died this morning when he hit a concrete median and lost control of his department-issued motorcycle on Lakeland Highlands Road near Lake Miriam Drive, according to the Polk Sheriff’s Office. More
Lakeland police are seeking help locating two teens who were last seen leaving the Motel 6 on U.S. 98 near Interstate 4 on New Year’s Day. Haleigh Cole, 15, and Jorden Payne, 16, were visiting Jorden’s parents there; they left on foot, saying they were going to a store, but did not return.
Jorden was wearing a red Nike jacket and gray shorts, according to an LPD Facebook post. Haleigh was wearing denim overalls and a “Friends” T-shirt, her mother said on Facebook. Jorden has family in Valdosta, Ga., LPD said.
Anyone with information about the teens’ location is asked to contact Detective Charlene Ali at 863.834.8974 or Charlene.email@example.com.
Two houses a little over a mile apart near Lake Gibson High School were destroyed in separate fires Saturday morning. No people were injured, but two dogs died, according to Polk County Fire Rescue. The first fire was reported at 4:28 a.m. at 258 Padgett Place, and the other one was about an hour later at 7515 Socrum Loop Road N. MORE COVERAGE: 10 News
The Lakeland Police Department has been sued in federal court by a man seeking $150,000-plus in damages for an incident (summarized here), claiming officers used excessive force in shooting and injuring him at his apartment in 2015. Police said Wesley Cook refused to drop his handgun when they responded to a domestic disturbance call. Cook says in the lawsuit that physical force was unnecessary because he didn’t threaten anybody with the weapon.
News Channel 8 looks at the eight addresses in Lakeland where crimes are reported most often. The locations and explanations offered by LPD Assistant Chief Sam Taylor: Lakeland Regional Health (many victims end up there); five retail locations, including both Walmarts, Lakeland Square Mall, Circle K at Florida and 14th; and McDonald’s on Memorial Boulevard (shoplifting and parking lot accidents dominate); Lakewood Terrace Apartments on 14th Street; and Talbot House (homeless people are often victims and the organization “facilitates the reporting.”) Overall crime continues declining, Taylor says.
A crash at Cherry Lane and Lunn Road in Medulla (map) sent nine people to the hospital, one of them critically injured. The accident involved two teen-driven vehicles traveling fast side-by-side down the two-lane Cherry Lane, deputies said. One failed to stop at the Lunn Road stop sign and was hit by a pickup truck, whose 41-year-old driver was later charged with DUI, deputies said. No charges have been filed yet against the teen drivers. Neighbors said cars frequently race down Cherry Lane.
A 1:30 a.m. fire damaged a barber shop today at 105 W. Oak Drive, across the street from the Southgate Publix. Firefighters extinguished the blaze quickly, but there was smoke damage to a neighboring business. No injuries were reported.
Mike Link, 57, is retiring from the Lakeland Police Department on Dec. 30, more than 34 years after starting as a weekend reserve officer and rising to the rank of assistant chief. He oversaw criminal investigations and started the department’s cold case homicide unit.
A bomb threat during a 200-person rally supporting impeachment of President Trump closed several downtown streets Tuesday night. No bomb was found, but closure of a parking lot where a suspicious vehicle was spotted forced dozens of people to seek alternative transportation home.