A Polk County woman is dead, after being shot and killed by a deputy sheriff.
Sheriff Grady Judd says that woman made a frantic 911 call at 1:32 pm Saturday, saying she needed help for her son, then hung up. Dispatchers tried calling her back several times. During those calls, the woman called back on another line and said her son was hospitalized and it was a matter of life and death.
Polk CO. Deputy Sheriff Lockard arrived at the caller's house, in the 7400 block of Hastings Rd. in rural Lake Wales at 1:42 p.m. He found on medical emergency, and her son was no where to be found, so EMS was canceled from responding.
Minutes later, Deputy Sheriff Lockard made a frantic radio call to dispatch saying the woman pulled a large knife on him, and he fired his gun at her. Lockard gave first aid, and the woman was airlifted to Osceola Regional Hospital, where she later died from her injuries.
"At this point n investigation, while preliminary, we see the deputy was absolutely justified to protect his life when he was confronted by a woman with a large butcher knife," said Sheriff Grady Judd.
The woman has been identified as 53-year-old Miriam Ann Savino. She was arrested on battery charges in 2010 for threatening two other law enforcement officers with a weapon.
Deputy Sheriff Lockard has been placed on paid administrative leave as Saturday's shooting investigation continues. He's been with the Polk Co. Sheriff's Office since 2011.
"This is a horrific event any time. It's especially tough on Christmas Eve. I'm thankful my deputy wasn't hurt. She forced us to take deadly protective action with her actions," said Sheriff Judd.