On Oct. 19, at about 12:17 p.m., the Bartow Police Department was notified of an escaped prisoner in the area of Mosaic Park, 2250 S Floral Ave. Responding officers initially learned that a Department of Corrections prisoner had escaped custody, taking a correctional officer as hostage in a stolen City of Bartow utility truck. Detectives with the police department responded and immediately coordinated a search for the escaped prisoner with the assistance of the Polk County Sheriff’s Office.
During the investigation, detectives learned that a work crew of five DOC prisoners were working in the area of the park. At some point, the suspect (escaped prisoner) brandished a small utility knife and threatened the correctional officer. After securing the other prisoners in a nearby park facility, the suspect obtained the officer’s handcuffs and secured the officer with the same.
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