On June 11, according to reports, police responded to the Lake Wales bike path between N. 4th and N. 5th Streets regarding a robbery which had occurred there. The juvenile victims, two boys, ages 16 and 17, reported they had been on the bike path and were robbed by several black males.
According to reports, this occurred sometime in the afternoon before 4 p.m.
Both victims told police they were walking with bikes on the bike path going to a friend’s house on Yarnell Avenue. Both stated they were in the area of North 4th Street and North 5th Street when they heard someone call out to them. When they turned around, a group of black males was walking towards them, the victims indicated. The also indicated that one of the males looked like someone they knew so they stopped and were going to walk towards the group.
Both stated as the group approached them, they realized they did not know anyone in the group. At this time the group began to surround them, the teens said. One victim stated he was grabbed by a tall, thin build black male and while he was being held another black male approached him, struck him on the side of his head and removed his cell phone from his pants pocket.
Both victims also told police the same black male who struck the first victim, also struck the second one. The second victim stated he started to go towards the first victim to help him when the black male who hit him, pulled a knife out and told him not to move. The second victim told officers he was afraid he was going to get cut so he stopped. He also told officers this is when the black male demanded his wallet.
The victims stated there were five or six black males in the group, but they could only provide a description of four of them. The teens said the group took the bikes they had with them, and then said the males went towards 5th Street and left towards Spook Hill Elementary School.
After police conducted taped interviews with the victims, the first victim was looking at a Facebook profile and showed it to officers, along with a photograph from the profile. He told officers that this was the male who grabbed him during the incident.
Officers escorted the victims to Yarnell Avenue to make contact with the owner of the bikes. Police made contact with the owner of the bikes and he was able to provide officers with information and a description, including the serial number for one of the bikes. He also provided police with a description of the second bike, but did not have any serial number information.
Through the investigation, police developed one suspect, Lavanzo Eugene Drummond, 15. The first victim positively identified Drummond from the photo lineup, according to police, and officers responded to 2300 Sunset Pointe Dr., where they made contact with the suspect.
Drummond was placed under arrest for robbery and transported to Lake Wales Police Department. During the interview with detectives, Drummond stated he was picked up from 522 Greentree Circle. Detectives responded to this location and observed two bikes matching the description of the stolen bikes in the side yard of the residence. Police spoke to the residents, who did not know anything about the bikes, according to reports.
Detectives recovered the bikes and returned them to the owner, and indicated that the investigation is on-going.