DRONE ON: The Polk County Sheriff’s Office and the Lakeland Police Department are using drones to replace helicopters for certain emergency situations. Both forces note the cost savings of using drones. Depending on model, the drones cost $1,200 to $22,000 each and an LPD spokesman estimated the PCSO drones cost approximately $500 per hour to operate.
BULLY PROBLEMS: A newspaper investigation into Lakeland middle school records found that Sleepy Hill Middle School concluded there were seven cases of bullying in the last five years out of their 35 investigations. Lakeland Highlands Middle School found two cases were bullying out of 38 reported, and four were concluded as bullying at Southwest Middle School in 14 investigations. The article also noted that Lakeland police responded to fights at the schools over the same five year period — 101 times to Sleepy Hill, 61 times to Southwest, and 32 times to Lakeland Highlands.
CAMPER FIRE: Saturday, the Lakeland Fire Rescue Crew pulled a man from a burning camper in his North Lakeland back yard. While the man slept, his mattress caught fire. Bystanders were able to pull him off the mattress, but unable to pull him out of the camper. The man was taken to the hospital.