Florida Forest Service firefighters based in Lakeland have been deployed to Oklahoma, Texas, Oregon, California, Utah, Idaho and Colorado to help suppress wildfires.
Deputies are still looking for the driver of the F-150 that injured Private Lawson and is believed to have killed Kelli Black on Galloway Road last week.
Speaking from his recovery bed, Army PFC Kalen Lawson talked with News Channel 8 about the night last week he was injured by a hit-and-run driver on Galloway Road as he helped a woman who had just been hit by another hit-and-run driver:
“She reached out and she grabbed my hand and basically said, ‘Please don’t leave me; please don’t let me go.’ And I basically told her, ‘I’m not going to let you go, ma’am,'” Lawson said. He continued: “She was speaking to us. She would have definitely survived if that second car hadn’t showed up. She would have gotten help and gone to the hospital, and I truly believe she would be alive today.”
The Polk Sheriff’s Office and Heartland Crime Stoppers — 1-800-226-TIPS (8477) — are looking for the driver of the white or light-colored Ford F-150 pickup truck believed to have killed Kelli Black early last Thursday. The driver of the first vehicle turned himself in.
Joseph Kiersey was found, is safe and has been reunited with his family, the Polk Sheriff’s Office reported shortly after 5 p.m. today. The Silver Alert has been canceled.
SILVER ALERT: Joseph Kiersey, 82, diagnosed with advanced Alzheimer’s, was reported missing. He left home, 3361 Merlot Dr., 8:45 a.m. in a 2001 white Ford Ranger (Fla. tag Y50NVQ). Clothing: plaid shirt, faded black shorts, white shoes. If you see him, call 863-298-6200. #lkld pic.twitter.com/jzWL3hj6HX
— Lkld Now (@LkldNow) August 3, 2018
TODAY: Nobody was hurt when Lakeland Police Detective Joshua Schecker, 30, crashed his unmarked car into the rear of a Jeep on Lakeland Hills Boulevard near LRMC around 8:10 a.m. A review board will meet to determine if discipline is warranted.
JULY 13: After a long shift and a sleepless night, LPD Officer Camilo Almeida, 32, fell asleep at the wheel before his cruiser overturned at 6:20 a.m. July 13 on County Line Road at Gateway Boulevard, the department reported today. The officer had minor injuries; the car was totaled. A review board found the accident to be preventable.
A 40-year-old Polk City woman died in a hit-and-run accident on North Galloway early this morning, and a young Army soldier who stopped to help her was injured when they were both hit by a second hit-and-run driver.
The woman, Kelly Marie Black, was hit from behind by a GMC SUV around 2:24 a.m. while riding an unregistered scooter northbound on Galloway Road just south of Kathleen Road, the Polk Sheriff’s Office reported.
Private First Class Kalen Lawson, a 20-year-old Lakelander visiting home from Fort Hood, Texas, is hospitalized with a broken leg, Sheriff Grady Judd said. More
A Polk deputy, whose name hasn’t been released yet, is recovering after being hit by the driver of a car he had stopped in north Lakeland Sunday night. The suspect, also not named yet, took off onto I-4 and the Polk Parkway and was involved in a shooting with deputies after his car ran off the road north of Auburndale. He was hospitalized. No deputies were injured in the shooting. More information is expected this morning | More: Bay News 9
Per the media’s request here are some photos from the scene of a deputy-involved shooting that started with a traffic stop miles away in north #Lakeland this evening. The scene is in #Auburndale & it is raining at this time. More info will be released tomorrow pic.twitter.com/d84Vu0YLO5
— Polk County Sheriff (@PolkCoSheriff) July 23, 2018
Dramatic video has drawn national attention to the wounding of a beer thief by a convenience store co-owner in Lakeland. The young merchant has been charged with attempted second-degree murder; the wounded man who stole $36 worth of beer will be charged with felony if he pulls through at Lakeland Regional Medical Center, where he’s in critical condition, Newsweek reports. His sister-in-law told the magazine that although he’s a convicted felon who “doesn’t make good decisions,” he’s got a job and could have paid for the beer. “Nobody deserves to be gunned down for beer,” she said.
The Polk Sheriff’s Office has received 98 applications for 90 armed guardian positions at elementary school. But the agency wants more applicants since some applicants won’t pass the intensive training that’s under way, 10 News reports.