NewsPolk County


Polk Sheriff: 1 dead with several in critical condition after shootout Sunday

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Posted at 11:59 AM, Jan 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-31 05:09:20-05

WINTER HAVEN, Fla. — The Polk County sheriff said on Sunday that a 20-year-old man died after being shot eight times and several others are in critical condition.

The sheriff said in the press conference that early Sunday around 1:13 a.m. a group of young men left a bowling alley in a silver Toyota Camry. The driver was 26 while the others in the car were a 20-year-old passenger and two 17-year-olds.

They went toward Martin Luther King Boulevard when a dark car pulled up that had been following the Camry.

The dark car had at least two men that shot into the Camry. The cars then shot back and forth while still driving. The shootout was seen by friends of the people in the Camry. They found the 20-year-old passenger dead. He was shot eight times. The 26-year-old was shot eight times. One 17-year-old was shot twice and the other 17-year-old was shot seven or eight times.

The dead 20-year-old had two guns on him. Sheriff Grady said dozens of shots were fired, but they are still counting and can't estimate the total yet. Deputies know of at least four guns. Other evidence found includes marijuana and cash.

The two others from the Camry are at the hospital in critical condition. One man from the dark car was found at another hospital. They are all in custody but no charges have yet been filed.

Now deputies are looking for the dark-colored sedan and are asking for the communities help. The sheriff said the dark-colored sedan will have several gun holes and some damage to the vehicle.

The sheriff said this wasn't a random shooting and the community is safe. Detectives are still investigating and would take any help from the public with tips or videos of the scene.

"Kids aren't supposed to kill kids," Sheriff Judd said.

Anyone who has information about this shooting is encouraged to call the Polk County Sheriff's Office at 863-298-6200 or Crime Stoppers. If you wish to remain anonymous, or if you would like to receive a cash reward for information leading to the arrest of a suspect, you can contact Heartland

Crime Stoppers:

  • Call 1-800-226 TIPS (8477)
  • From your cell phone, dial **TIPS
  • Or visit the website heartlandcrimestoppers and click on "Submit A Tip"
  • Or download the free "P3tips" app on your smartphone or tablet.

Watch the full conference below: