In order to help each other through issues of stress, depression, and suicidal thoughts Lakeland Fire Department first responders are receiving training by the Florida Firefighters Safety & Health Collaborative. Due to their shared experiences, peer support is often the first step for those coping with job-related issues.
Category: Public Safety
Spectrum News Florida is hosting a town hall at 7 p. m. tonight in the RP Funding Center to examine the effect Hurricane Michael had on Florida’s panhandle and what could happen if the Polk County area suffered a similar fate. Spectrum has invited lawmakers, storm victims, emergency personnel, and meteorologists to discuss the devastation, subsequent recovery efforts, and lessons learned.
Free tickets are available for area citizens who would like to participate. Doors will open at 5:30 p. m. with everyone seated by 6:45 p.m. and light refreshments will be provided. Spectrum will air the town hall live, and will replay it at 7 p.m. on January 19th.
The family of Michael Taylor, the teen who was shot and killed by police officers Dec. 26 while attempting to flee in a car the police believed to be stolen, said they plan to sue the Lakeland Police Department. At a news conference Thursday, Michael’s mother asked that an officer be charged with murder.
ALSO: Taylor’s mother claims the bullet wounds were in the rear and side of her son’s body, Bay News 9 reports.
FWIW, it appears the news conference was staged for TV cameras only. The local newspaper was not invited; neither was LkldNow.
Lakeland Police Chief Larry Giddens, 55, announced today he is leaving the police department on Feb. 1 after 34 years and is accepting an undisclosed employment opportunity. Here is a news release from the city of Lakeland followed by Giddens’ resignation letter to City Manager Tony Delgado: More
A pedestrian was hit and killed by a freight train around 4 a.m. today near the Combee Road rail crossing just south of U.S. 92 in east Lakeland. Four CSX rail crossings in the area have reopened after being blocked most of the morning. The victim was identified as Randolph Eugene Rhymes of Lakeland. “Video on the train shows him lying between the rails between Fish Hatchery Road and Combee Road. Deputies believe he was possibly sleeping when he was hit. No foul play is suspected,” according to a Polk County Sheriff’s Office news release.
Lakeland Police Chief Larry Giddens says his officers were following procedure when they fired into a moving vehicle, resulting in the death of a teen who tried to run them down early Wednesday. But many police agencies, including some in the Tampa Bay area, restrict firing into a moving vehicle, the Tampa Bay Times reports.
Scott Pearson of Stoney Creek, Ontario, was walking around Cypress Lakes north of Lakeland, where he was visiting his parents, when he saw an alligator biting into a man’s foot. He ran toward the man; his wife called 911; the gator let go; and Scott used his shirt as a tourniquet to stop the bleeding. Victim George Ihle, 85, survived.