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News Story
Updated: 01/18/2014 08:00:00AM

Stolen bicycle found

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Taurus Moye

Steven Markowitz

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A 35-year-old Lake Wales resident was booked into the Polk County Jail on Jan. 3 on a dealing with stolen property charge after police found a bicycle that had been missing for four months.

Justin Tyrell Lawson, of 243 2nd Ave. N., Lake Wales, admitted to knowing the bicycle was stolen when he sold it to a pawn shop for $17, the Bartow Police Department reports.

On Aug. 27, Angela Davison called the police to report her son’s Maggert bicycle was stolen from their carport. Three days later she said she saw someone riding the bicycle into the Azalea Gardens complex on Golfview Avenue.

Police found the bicycle and questioned Elijah Derek Hill who was riding it. He told police he borrowed the bicycle from a friend he only knew as Coon and he did not know where he was.

On Nov. 29, Davison and her husband, Ronald, saw a bicycle that looked like their son’s at 1395 Main St. He confirmed by looking at the serial number that it was his son’s bicycle.

Through the paperwork, police determined who sold the bicycle and they contacted Lawson in the South County Jail in Frostproof as he had been arrested on an unrelated burglary charge by Lakeland Police.

Lawson told police he didn’t know the bicycle was stolen and told them that he’d gotten it from a man named Tevin, police reported.

Later Lawson told police he learned the bicycle was stolen after he got in touch with Elijah Hill. Lawson said he hid the bike at his grandmother’s house for about a week and then decided to pawn it because he didn’t want it in his possession anymore. He also admitted to police he signed paperwork at the pawn dealer identifying himself as the owner of the bicycle, reports say. In attempts to find Tevin and Elijah Hill, police were unsuccessful, they said.

$3,000 reward offered in homicide probe

Polk County Sheriff’s detectives are seeking a person of interest in the homicide of Davonte Lewis that occurred on Friday, Oct. 11.

Taurus Terrell Moye, 35, has a warrant for his arrest for possession of weapon by convicted felon, and is wanted for questioning in the homicide.

Moye is a black male, 6-feet tall, 218 pounds, and was released from prison last May after serving a 10-year sentence for attempted second-degree murder and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon. The Polk County Sheriff’s Office said he should be considered armed and dangerous.

Moye’s last known address is 5634 Cherry Wood Circle, Lakeland. The PCSO says he has tattoos on his back “Stromb” and “It Was Written,” on his left arm, “Krazy” “TM” WPG” on his right arm, bars, “Cry No More,” and “He Has Gold Teeth.”

Anyone who has information about Moye’s whereabouts should call Detective Jason McPherson at 863-298-6200.

Man charged with possession of child porn

A Mulberry man was arrested Tuesday, Jan. 14, for possession of child pornography, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office reports.

According to the affidavit, detectives received a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children concerning a Google subscriber downloading three images of child pornography.

Detectives obtained the IP address and email address information from Google, and ascertained that the subscriber lived at 4210 Digital Court, Mulberry. Detectives got a search warrant for that address, and located 23-year-old Steven Markowitz, who lives there with his mother and other family members. Markowitz admitted to downloading and exchanging child pornography via the Internet and email, according to reports.

Detectives placed Markowitz under arrest and seized his computer for further investigation. He was been booked into the Polk County Jail without bond on one count possession of child pornography.

Further charges are pending the results of forensic analysis of Markowitz’s computer, the sheriff’s office reports.

Van hits teen chasing skateboard into road

(AP) — A high school junior is dead after he chased his skateboard into a Lakeland road and was hit by a van.

Police say 16-year-old Devyn Rainey was standing on the curb Monday afternoon when his skateboard rolled into the road. He went to retrieve it and was hit by a van driven by 58-year-old Douglas Heruska.

The driver stopped and attempted to help Rainey. Sheriff’s officials say several other drivers and bystanders also tried to help the boy.

Investigators say Heruska did not appear to be impaired or speeding. The investigation is continuing but deputies say it doesn’t appear there will be any charges.

Dice didn’t work here

A man pulled over on Sunday, Dec. 29 for having dice hanging from his rearview mirror that appeared to be hampering his vision from the road was ultimately arrested for possession of pot and paraphernalia in his car, the Bartow Police Department reports.

Hunter Reynolds Haines, 18, of 620 Varina St., Bartow, was booked into the Polk County Jail on the two charges, police report.

At 12:10 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 29, Haines driving a blue Jeep Cherokee was pulled over on Broadway because of the dice. When the officer asked if he could search the car, Haines would not let him, the report said. Upon talking with the person, another officer showed up and he saw a clear mason jar on the floor in the back of the vehicle. He noticed there was a green leafy substance inside. The officer asked Haines if he could take a look at the jar which he allowed. Upon testing it they discovered it was marijuana and the amount was 3.6 grams.

Lake Wales man to be sent to Texas on warrant

In a traffic stop for having tint too dark on his car while he was driving on Magnolia Avenue in Bartow on Tuesday, Dec. 31, a 41-year-old Lake Wales resident was found to have a warrant for his arrest in Beaumont, Texas, for felony theft, the Bartow Police Department reported.

After Thomas Lee Tindell, of 3800 Bruce Blvd., Lot 27, Lake Wales, was stopped, Officer Carl Smith ran a computer check on him and found there was a warrant issued on Thursday, Oct. 17 for felony theft, the Bartow Police Department reported. It was confirmed with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.

The officer was told Jefferson County would extradite Tindell from Florida. Tindell was also given a warning about the illegal tint on his front windshield.

BP gas station shooting suspect in custody

Lake Wales Police have made an arrest in the Sunday, Jan. 5 shooting that took place at the BP gas station located at 704. N. Scenic Hwy., Lake Wales.

According to reports, on Wednesday, Jan. 8, at approximately 1 p.m., Hilbert “Shiney Gillz” Garza, 30, of Frostproof, turned himself in to the Polk County Jail. Garza had an active warrant for aggravated battery with a firearm. Police had been searching for him since Jan. 6, when a warrant was obtained.

In the shooting, 21-year-old Earnest Hampton Jr., was taken to Lake Wales Medical Center for his injuries and later airlifted to Lakeland Regional Medical Center, according to reports. Hampton was in stable condition as of Jan. 8, according to Lake Wales Deputy Chief Troy Schulze.

Schulze said the Jan. 5 shooting was apparently over money owed to Hampton. According to reports, Hampton saw a female at the business who owed him money, so he approached her asking about the money. Police say the female was the driver’s side backseat passenger in a vehicle occupied by three other people, one of whom was Garza.

As the discussion turned into an argument, a male who was the passenger side backseat passenger told Hampton to leave the female alone and deal with him if he had a problem. As Hampton was walking around the vehicle to the male passenger who became involved, he was allegedly shot by Garza, who was a front seat passenger, according to reports.

After being shot, police say Hampton fled the area, as did Garza and the occupants of the vehicle, police reported.

On Jan. 6, detectives were able to locate the three passengers who allegedly were in the vehicle with Garza. The witnesses told detectives Garza dropped them off after the shooting and fled with the vehicle, reports say. Police note the witnesses identified Garza as the shooter; police added that Hampton was also able to identify Garza as the shooter.

Garza was charged with aggravated battery with a firearm.


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