City News Blog

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This is the official blog of the City of Lakeland, Florida. Check back frequently to stay up to date with all that going on in our beautiful city!


LAKELAND, FL (November 28, 2016) -  The Lakeland Police Department is now accepting toy donations for their annual Annual Cops for Kids toy drive. Now in its tenth year, the toy donation program, with the help of generous community donors, allows families to provide their children with a happy holiday. Toy donations for children up to 12 years of age are accepted. 

New, unwrapped toys can be dropped off at any of the following locations:

  • Lakeland Police Station / 219 N. Massachusetts Ave.
  • Lakeland Libraries (Main & Jackson Branch) / 100 Lake Morton Dr. and 1700 N. Florida Ave.
  • City Hall / 228 S. Massachusetts Ave.
  • Lakeland Electric / 501 E Lemon St.
  • Kelly Recreation Complex / 404 Imperial Blvd

Monetary Donations 

Monetary donations are also accepted and can be mailed to the Lakeland Police Department at 219 N Massachusetts Avenue, Attention: Crime Prevention Unit. Please notate Cops for Kids on the memo line of your check or money order. 

The toys collected will be given to parents at the annual Cops for Kids pick-up party scheduled for December 15, 2016. Kids in attendance will have their photo made with Santa and enjoy a complimentary dinner.

“Over the past ten years, our Cops for Kids program has helped ease the burden for hundreds of families and allowed thousands of children to have a happy holiday,” said Chief Larry Giddens. “One of the greatest things we can do as a police department is give back to our citizens in need, for whom we take great pride in serving every day.”

If you need assistance through the program, you must register at the police station on Monday, November 28, 2016 and bring the following items:

  • Current Lakeland Electric Bill 
  • Photo ID
  • Original Birth Certificate for Each Child

Please Note: Your registration does not guarantee acceptance



Contact

Media inquiries should be directed to 863/583-2357

Robin Tillett, Media Relations | Lakeland Police Department
863/834-2963 (PH) | lakelandgov.net/lpdTwitter @lakelandpd


Lakeland, FL (November 22, 2016) - On November 21, 2016, at approximately 8:50 PM , the Lakeland Police Department (LPD) responded to the Old Navy store, located at 919 Lakeland Park Center Drive. An employee in the store stated that four suspects had entered the store, concealed merchandise into bags and attempt to exit the store. When confront at the exit and after passing all points of sales, the suspects dropped three of the bags of merchandise which contained at total of $1075.94 in merchandise. On suspect identified as Ashli Adams, struck the employee in the face as another suspect ran out the store with a bag of merchandise totaling $331.04. The employee was unable to get a look at the vehicle or provide a direction of travel for the suspects.

At approximately 9:00 PM, Polk County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Gann was conducting a traffic stop on a 2010 Mercury Milan in the area of Kathleen Road and Interstate Drive due to the vehicle having a seize tag order. During a search of the vehicle, deputies observed numerous items of clothing from the Old Navy Store that still had the security devices on the merchandise. Deputy Gann contacted LPD and determined that they were conducting a robbery investigation at Old Navy that occurred 20 minutes earlier.

The employee that was battered was transported to the scene by LPD and she positively identified the four suspects. The officer who investigated the robbery also noted that the four suspects were wearing the same clothing as captured on video in Old Navy at the time of the incident. The video is not being released at this time.

  • Donovan Brown, 19 years of age, Tampa, FL – Charged with Grand Theft
  • Ashli V Adams, 19 years of age, Tampa, FL – Charged with Robbery without a Firearm.
  • Rashonda Milton, 19 years of age, Tampa, FL – Charged with Grand Theft
  • Alexis Lee, 18 years of age, Tampa, FL – Charged with Grand Theft

Media inquiries should be directed to (863) 583-2357.




Lakeland, FL (November 9, 2016) – On October 29, 2016, at 7:11 p.m., the Lakeland Police Department responded to an armed robbery at the Subway store, located at 5395 Socrum Loop Road. The cashier stated that the suspect approached the front register and lifted his shirt to reveal a handgun. The suspect demanded money and the cashier complied. The suspect fled on foot to the rear of the business.

On November 1, 2016, at 9:57 p.m.
, the Lakeland Police Department responded to an armed robbery at the Exxon Station, located at 4655 Socrum Loop Road. The suspect entered the business through the south side door, approached the counter and then produced a handgun. The suspect demanded the clerk to give him all the money in the register and then fled out the south side door.

On November 6, 2016 at approximately 1:56 p.m., the Lakeland Police Department responded to XYZ Liquor, 2190 Hwy 92 East, in reference to an armed robbery. The suspect approached the clerk at the registered, lifted his shirt to reveal a handgun and demanded the cash from the register. The suspect fled on foot in an unknown direction.

A fourth robbery occurred in the Polk County Sheriff’s Office jurisdiction at the Marathon Gas Station, 111 Marcum Road, on November 3rd and it is believed to be the same suspect. The clerks were not injured in the robberies

The suspect is described as a white or light-skinned Hispanic male, approximately 6’0 tall, 150 pounds, clean shaven, possibly 25 to 35 years of age. He was wearing a Tampa Bay Rays hat, dark shorts and a gray sweatshirt during several of the robberies. The suspect should be considered ARMED AND DANGEROUS.

If you can identify this suspect, please contact Detective Edward Sealey at 863.834.5991 or by email at edward.sealey@lakelandgov.net. Heartland Crime Stoppers is offering a $10,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest. To be eligible for a cash reward from Crime Stoppers you must contact crime stoppers before contacting police.

*Additional pictures and videos are in our Drop Box here.  



LAKELAND, FL (October 28, 2016) | The Lakeland Police Department is proud to announce that it has successfully obtained reaccreditation from the Commission for Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation (CFA). Chief Giddens and members of the department attended the quarterly CFA meeting in Weston on Wednesday, October 25, where they were presented with the official accreditation status. The designation will remain in effect for a period of three years.


In order to obtain the accreditation status, the Lakeland Police Department was required to demonstrate compliance with 54 mandatory standards. In addition to the mandatory standards, the Department also achieved compliance with 20 non-mandatory standards. Proof of compliance was determined by an assessment team, sent by the Commission, during an on-site review on July 13, 2016. During the visit, the team reviewed the department’s policies, procedures and practices.

“The Lakeland Police Department is an impressive agency that holds its members to the highest standards. It was apparent during the assessment that every member of the agency is proud of the work they do for the City,” wrote Sergeant Nicole Minick, Team Leader with CFA.

“As with our national CALEA® reaccreditation earlier this year, this designation from the CFA reaffirms the dedication and professionalism shown everyday by men and women who work to protect and serve the citizens of Lakeland,” said Chief Larry Giddens.

Media inquiries should be directed to (863) 583-2357.