News Update for 6/24/19

Highlands County Sheriff’s officials say it will be a while before the second of two homicide victims is positively identified.
The bodies of two men were found Saturday about nine miles apart. The first was discovered Saturday morning in an orange grove in a rural area between Avon Park and Sebring. That one has been identified as 30-year-old Jacquill Terrell Williams of Lake Placid.
A second then was discovered in an orange grove just a few miles from downtown Sebring. An autopsy is being conducted to determine their identity.
It has not been revealed how the victims died.
Authorities say both investigations still are “very active” and are looking for anyone with information in the cases.

An accident on Highway 64 this morning reportedly has resulted in injury. The mishap occurred shortly after 11:30 just inside the Hardee County line.
Witnesses say a car and a semi-truck collided. No names or other detai8ls have yet been released.

At least one person was injured this morning when a pickup crossed Highway 27 and slammed into the marquee sign in front of the Fairmount Cinema Square shopping complex.
That mishap occurred shortly before 7am. Reportedly, the driver was airlifted out. No names or other details have yet been released.

A firefighter reportedly had to be treated for possible heat exhaustion yesterday after battling the flames at a brush fire. That one broke out near the Unity Church of Sebring on South Orange Blossom Boulevard south of Sebring.
Units from Desoto City, Leisure Lakes, West Sebring and the Florida Forest Service responded. They were able to keep the fire away from the church building then contain it. Cause of the blaze has not been released.

Code enforcement again will be on the minds of the Avon Park city council when they meet tonight. The city has been looking for a second special magistrate to hear code enforcement cases, in an effort to clean up a long back-log.
Two letters of interest have been received. One is from the Polk County law firm of Boswell & Dunlap of Bartow, the other is from Thomas Thanas – from Bradenton.
In other action, the council will discuss an ordinance that could allow municipal inspections of rental properties and look over proposals for the fire assessment in the City of Charm.

Authorities are investigating the death of an 84-year-old Florida jail inmate who fell down a flight of stairs. The Polk County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release Sunday that inmate Arthur Gilmore hit his head during the fall, suffering a laceration. Officials say he was initially responsive and talking, telling deputies that he failed to grasp a handrail on the stairs.
Later Gilmore became unresponsive and was taken to a hospital, where he died early Sunday.
Gilmore was jailed for violating probation by having contact with a child. The probation followed a 10-year prison sentence Gilmore served after pleading guilty to attempted sexual battery of a child. He was released in February 2018.

A Polk County woman has been arrested for allegedly taking her husband’s guns and turning them over to police. Lakeland Police say 32-year-old Courtney Irby told police Joseph Irby tried to run her over with a car. She later went to his apartment and searched for the guns.
According to the arrest affidavit, she told an officer she had the guns and he asked if she had committed an armed burglary. According to the affidavit, she said ‘yes’, but explained that her husband wasn’t going to turn them in. Police later spoke to Joseph Irby who said he wanted to press charges.
She was charged last week with armed burglary of a dwelling and grand theft of a firearm.